Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Wednesday Scramble (and "The Art of Rejection")

Tomorrow's guest

I'm excited to have Maryann Miller, editor and mystery author, visit us this week. Maryann's latest book from Five Star Publishing, Open Season, was released in January. Her post will be about Creating Characters.

Diana Holgvin-Balogh reports on "The Art of Rejection"

Diana, a member of Northern Colorado Writers, is working hard on revisions to her multicultural novel while planning her submissions and agent pitch schedules. She's well aware that rejection is part of the writerly experience, so she found this workshop especially helpful and agreed to share what she learned:

I recently attended The Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) conference in Washington, DC. One highlight session “The Art of Rejection” gave me new insight. I jokingly asked the door attendant if they were going to offer therapeutic time with qualified counselors.

My attempt at humor wasn’t far off the thematic take. One speaker likened sending our manuscripts to a mother packing a nutritious lunch for a child and sending him off to school for the first day. The child gets bullied and beat up. The mother has to prop up the little child and send him off again. Familiar with that feeling, we laughed.

Other interesting arguments:

1) Four percentage acceptance rate means lots of stellar writers are being rejected. We’re all in good company.

2) Constant rejection tests our internal fortitude. Only dedicated writers will survive.

3) Easy acceptance means we’re aiming too low. Standards are high for a reason.

4) We, as readers, are discriminatory. Shouldn’t the gatekeepers be allowed their narrow subjectivity?

I’m not sure rejection will be any easier for me, but now I better understand and accept my feelings.

Jenny's Top 10 Conference Takeaways from the Northern Colorado Writers Conference

This post at The Writing Bug is a really good summary of Jenny's conference experience--what she learned from workshop sessions, panels, and conference speakers. Reading it, however, will make you want to attend a good writers' conference more than ever.

An Englishman in New Jersey: The Online Journal of Writer Jon Gibbs

Jon has a post at his site that might have been fun to send to the writers who pitched their books to agents at the Northern Colorado Writers Conference on Saturday. These are the 10 Things You Shouldn't Say to an Agent During an In-Person Pitch.

Number 10 is blank so I'll add the one I heard an agent mention during the agent panel at the conference. He said, "Don't go into the pitch session and begin by saying, 'This isn't my best work.'" No agent wants to feel unworthy of your best effort.

YA Paranormal author Carolina Valdez Miller has an agent

And to celebrate, there are all sorts of giveaways happening at Carolina's blog and others participating in the Agent Signing Celebration Mega Giveaway. One of the prizes is a Kindle. Another is a first-page critique from Carolina's agent.

The above link will take you to Carolina's blog and all the information you need to enter at her site as well as the other cooperating sites. Congratulations to Carolina, and thanks to her and her bloggie friends who are part of the Mega Giveaway.

Do you ever have a problem leaving a comment on this blog?

One of my writer/blogger friends tells me she cannot leave a comment on my blog when she's using the Firefox browser, but she has no trouble when using Internet Explorer. Another of her followers was unable to leave a comment here as well.

As a result, I'd like to poll those of you who visit today to see which browser you use and if you're able to post a comment.

If you cannot, please help me out by following the link to my profile where you'll find an e-mail link, and then e-mail that information to me. If I have a problem, I need to get it fixed, especially before we launch the A to Z April Blog Challenge 2011 (which, by the way, was up to 480 participants as of yesterday afternoon).


Jan Morrison said...

I don't recall any particular problem with commenting on your site - I use Internet Explorer. I have problems with sites that aren't blogspot which BUGS me but there ya go.

I liked this piece on rejection - I'm entering into a spate of that I fear and am trying to gird my loins whatever that means!
See you at the A-Z!
Jan Morrison

welcome to my world of poetry said...

I found this very interesting, I don't like the word rejection used in any context albiet selling books or rejected by a friend or family.

Have a lovely day.

L.G.Smith said...

I'm jumping back into the rejection pool after revising my ms for the past few months. I'm also pitching in April at the Pikes Peak Conference, so I can relate. :)

Jemi Fraser said...

I haven't had any troubles commenting on your blog - but I've had a few people tell me they've had trouble on mine recently too. Wonder what's up!

Rejection stinks - but we sure do learn from it. :)

Heidi Windmiller said...

The rejection piece is inspiring. Makes me excited to query again!

I don't have any problems posting--I use Safari.

Patricia Stoltey said...

We'll never understand the world of Blogger, that's for sure.

As for rejections, one of the agents at the NCW Conference is also a published author, and he guaranteed he'd received more rejections than any of the rest of us. He gave us a number, and I only remember it was over 3,000. I decided maybe I wasn't submitting enough...

Mary Vaughn said...

They're a part of a writer's life. I only wish they called them something other than 'rejection.' That word is so defeating.

I've never had a problem commenting. When browsers make changes sometimes things go crazy.

Carolyn Schriber said...

I think I know what's going on. I use Firefox and Google Reader to make my way through blogs quickly. While I'm in Google Reader, I cannot comment on your blog. When I come over to your regular site, I can, as I'm doing now. So Google Reader seems to be the culprit, although I don't know how to solve the problem.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Losts of good stuff today! I'm using IE. And we're at 494 Challenge participans now.

Arlee Bird said...

I don't recall ever having a problem leaving a comment here--I'm using IE.

Rejection can be discouraging. I think if more people tried submitting press releases like I've been talking about in my most recent blog posts, they might be able to start with low level acceptance/rejection experiences that could help them later as they deal with bigger issues. I'd like to see some of the A to Zers attempt to get publicity for the Challenge and their own personal role in it--it would help us all some if we got a few successes.

Tossing It Out