Friday, April 30, 2010

My Blogging Friends

I love you all, you know. I love getting up in the morning and reading what everyone is up to. I'm a crappy commenter often, I'll admit. Sometimes I can't think of a single thing to say. I'm not terribly clever 24/7. In fact, my clever is sort of like seizures and comes in flashes. Sometimes, and I'll be honest here, what you say on your blogs, dear friends, is so incredibly insightful and deep, I got nothing. I just stare at your page, then read it again. Then I give you a psychic pat on the shoulder and move on. I try to follow everyone who follows me, but sometimes I can't find you. Your little icon has no link back and I'm incredibly stupid at working this blogging thing.


One of my dearest blogging friends, Anne, gave me an award today. She's at http://piedmontwriter.blogspot.com/ Pardon the lack of linkage, but I'm fairly certain those that follow me have already found this most awesome woman so don't need a clicky anyway. She's given me the 'A is for Awesome Award' which is pretty alliterate. I give this to...

Sarah a.k.a. Falen at http://falenformulatesfiction.blogspot.com/
She's an awesome and funny lady. She's also got a pretty funny and insightful dog.

Charity at http://charitywrites.blogspot.com/
She's been with me from the beginning, when I started out at Bransford's forums what seems ages ago, and still she's with me. I appreciate you, chickadee.

Mel at http://caledonialass.blogspot.com/
Again, I'll remind people I'm a sucky commenter, but Mel is not. She's always got something awesome to say to me, and she always makes me smile.

Shannon at http://shannonkodonnell.blogspot.com/
As many, many people know, Shannon is the bomb. She's got a zillion followers, but still reads me and almost always comments to let me know her thoughts.

Last, but definitely not least, I give this to Tahereh at: http://stiryourtea.blogspot.com/
Her post today is here: http://stiryourtea.blogspot.com/2010/04/probable-possibility.html
If you've not already read it, go read it now. NOW. I love that she is always so crazily upbeat and funny, but today's post made me cry. LITERALLY CRY MY EYES OUT (okay, not literally. They're still there), and I'll tell you why: She stole these words from my heart.

"i'd squeeze my eyes shut and swallow the heat in the back of my throat and clench my jaw and hold my breath and finally exhale as i read the email only to blink back the rejection burning through my body, shaming me, embarrassing me, diminishing me into silence.

it takes less than 10 seconds to realize you've been rejected.
"

I disagree. It takes me about 0.75 seconds. I see 'thank you' and I already know it's a rejection. I imagine a request for more pages to not start out with that platitude. I've never seen one, but I imagine it has my name and starts with something like "I've read this and wish to see more..." or "I'm happy to..." I don't know why, but I expect the letter to start with the agent speaking about themselves first and start with the word "I" or some variation.

"everyday you hear about people getting huge book deals, triple-book deals, massive book deals. everyday someone has a new story. someone is a break-out success. someone popped up out of nowhere and knew the right person at the right time and hit it big.

sometimes it hurts to hear.

not because you're jealous, besties. you're not jealous. you're just worried.

you wonder if there's enough room for you, too.
"

This was so accurate. I worry about this all the time. There's so many of us, dear friends. So many talented people out there and only so many openings. It truly is like trying to apply for your dream job and each query letter is your application. You send it out into the world and pray you meet whatever qualifications they are looking for. It's frustrating, yes, but heartbreaking. I want to be one of the people with a story. I want to be able to say, "If I did it, then you can, too."

But I can't. I'm still in the application stage. It's not about fame and fortune (it actually never was for me) but about accomplishing something I've set out to do. Even if I get published, I doubt anyone will know me or what I look like or where I live because being a writer isn't about being a celebrity. It's about being a storyteller. At least to me.

"maybe you think no one cares.
maybe you think your loved-ones are humoring you.
maybe you think they'll take you seriously if you land an agent.
maybe you wonder if you'll ever publish a book.
maybe you wonder if you're wasting your time?
"

I appreciate Tahereh for writing this. I can see these words and feel the truth of them. I also know that I will continue to feel this way until I 'make it' because 'making it' is the only way to feel as though my hopes and dreams are not in vain. Every day I think about giving up. Every day I don't. Agent rejection is not personal. I know this. My logical brain knows this. My heart doesn't. My heart tells me they all think I'm an idiot hack who just wasted 2.4 minutes of their time.

Einstein is credited with saying that repetition of the same activity in which you expect a different result is a trait of lunacy. Are we just crazy then? Okay, yeah we are. We know this. We revel in it. So trudge on, fellow trudgers.

34 comments:

Falen said...

aw thanks for the award!
And don't worry, we'll know who you are.
In the immortal words of Dory from Finding Nemo "just keep swimming, just keep swimming"

Falen said...

oooh i wanted to add that i just read Mathew Rush's blog post for today ((http://theqqqe.blogspot.com/2010/04/dead-in-corner-of-my-bedroom.html)

and she got a full manuscript request that began with "Thank you" - just thought i'd throw that in here

Lola Sharp said...

Yeah, what Sarah said...Just keep swimming!!

Happy Weekend, Christie. :o)

Love,
Lola

Talli Roland said...

Congrats on the award and to those you've passed it on to. I felt - feel - much the same way. There's always someone who hits the bestseller list, whose book gets tons of awards, who gets a massive advance. But there's room for all of us!

T. Anne said...

Congrats on the award!!! Thanks for the links I love meeting new bloggers.

Shelley Sly said...

Congrats on the award, and I want to add that I feel the same way you do. I agree with Talli though -- there's room for all of us. It'll come with time.

Aubrie said...

This is why I try to focus on the journey and not the end result. Although it would be nice to have an agent!

Instead, I think about the short stories that I've published, the friends I've made, what I've learned...

Jaydee Morgan said...

This is what's great about the blogging community - they're always there to support you and to never let you quit!

Have a great weekend :)

Mary McDonald said...

I'm exactly the same way. I'm happy when someone gets an agent or publishing deal because I see that it does happen in real life...but then, I worry that I'll always be the one with my face pressed to the window looking in. :-(

Terry Towery said...

There's room for us, Christi. We'll just elbow 'em out of the way. ;)

Charity Bradford said...

Aw *hugs* thanks Christi. I'm still with you cause you say and share so many of the things I'm thinking and feeling right now. It's good to know other people are in this life boat with me. Of, course, I would rather we could get on a luxury yacht together.

I love seeing people getting requests for partials, fulls and landing agents. I am happy for them, but feel like I'm coming late to the game. I haven't queried yet. I'm stuck between "just one more edit to be sure" and the fear of what could come from querying. the good and the bad.

Matthew Rush said...

A Psychic pat on the shoulder works for me. Sure I love comments but I'm willing to admit that my posts are not so amazing that everyone is going to have something to say about each one, every day.

Thanks for sharing Christi!

Today's guest blogger is The Alliterative Allomorph!

Wendy aka Quillfeather. said...

Congrats, Christi.

You'll get there. You're simply too good not to be published.

Caledonia Lass said...

Aww! Thank you! You know, there are days I feel I don't have much to say, but I do try to say something. Thanks for this award and with your help on my query! I'll be mailing you back today. Big internet/psychic hug! :D

Piedmont Writer said...

Thank you for the love. You deserve it. Congratulations to your winners. They deserve it.

And yes, we must keep swimming. Always forward.

Jemi Fraser said...

You do a great job with your blog and your comments. Congrats on the award. Great choices to pass it along to :)

sarahjayne smythe said...

Congrats on your award, your blog, your friends, your writing. It will all come together for you. :)

aspiring-x said...

great post. i think we all feel the same way. trudging now. after i check out this taherah lady...

Christi Goddard said...

Sorry it took so long to reply. I posted before leaving for Dallas for a concert. Which rocked, btw.

Falen - You're welcome. And thanks for the insight on my suspicions of positive agent response.

Lola - happy weekend to you, too.

Talli - I truly hope there is.

T. Anne - You're welcome, and these guys are awesome.

Shelley - I think a lot of us feel that way. I'm just dour enough to complain about it, unlike all the other positive people.

Aubrie - an agent would be awesome. I can't help but think about the end result. I'm the sort of person who plans constantly. Not of actual plans, but of possibilities.

Jaydee - I love this community. I don't know what I would have done without it.

Mary - I definitely feel like a face presser lately.

Terry - Aw, I could never elbow people out of the way. I just make loud remarks until they feel uncomfortable and move away.

Charity - I'm with you on 'late to the game.' If I had just started sooner, I tell myself, then I wouldn't have this problem.

Matt - I'll admit, you get lots of psychic pats on the back.

Wendy - that's incredibly sweet of you to say.

Anne - Always forward. Indeed.

Jemi - I'm glad you like my blog.

Sarahjayne - I hope so. I hope so for everyone.

Aspiring - what? You've not already been lurking at Tahereh's?

Postman said...

She (and you) have struck a chord here. This is a common worry for those of us who've committed ourselves to the masochistic task of getting a book published. You're right, I'm terrified that I'll sit in publishing hell forever, never breaking in, never breaking out. And it IS personal. To them, it's a job; to us, it's a lifestyle, a state of mind, all that metaphysical jazz. It's about setting out what we accomplished to do -- uh, wait, reverse that.

Thanks for putting that up there. I'm off to stir my tea right now. NOW.

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