Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Endurance and Victory! - Part One
Endurance, apparently I've failed at enduring in keeping this blog up ;) Once more I cry that "school work and such" has busied me. And it is true, but no excuse.
Aside from school I've been hurriedly reading away at The Victor, a book that I will very shortly be giving away on my blog. Next comes Curse of the Spider King and then a boatload of others. So as if school was not enough I have plenty to read.
BUT, have no fear, I am starting a series of blog posts about endurance and um...victory.
Many of you who have read or are familiar with COTSK will know that a common saying of its characters is "Endurance and Victory!" And as lately I have had to endure in school, reading, writing, and life I thought I'd blog on it.
The first in the series will be about writing, as this is a writing blog.
I'm well connected in the writing world, or at least I'd like to believe that I am, and specifically I chat with a lot of young aspiring authors (like myself). Many of these writers have amazing ideas, tales that I'd pay arm and leg to read. Many even know how to write them. But often a thing they lack is endurance. And that, in my mind, is one of the most important characteristics of any writer.
Not only does writing novels take a long time. But it requires patience to wait on characters, plot development, and ones own self--willing to let a project sit so that it can be done correctly. And once the story is done it requires enduring numerous amounts of critiquing and shaping on the part of others.
I know writers who don't get writer's block, Bryan Davis as an example, but most all do. It's a fact of life. And often I find myself just waiting on my characters asking them what they want to do next, and what is happening to them at the moment. Naturally, this requires a good deal of endurance. The strength to wait, which I don't have ;) I choke answers out of my characters.
This next part is where I've recently been having the most trouble, enduring through the times when I'm too tired, or my brain is too fried, or I can't get into the story, and then forcing myself to not writing. It's a sacrifice I've had to make. I've been in this spot for a while now, where I'm just too dead to write. I have to endure through this because I know that if I do try and write, the story will be unbelievable and, to be honest, garbage. As you can assume, I don't want my story to be garbage and this spurs my endurance.
Next comes the point that ends the journey of most writers--publication.
It seems to me that the path to publication is too strenuous or difficult for most to endure. From the stories I've heard, it's pretty hard. Even if you're not a writer, imagine this scenario. You pour your heart, mind, and life into something--a child perhaps--and then when your child is old enough, you are told that he is a worthless piece of garbage. How would that make you feel?
You see, many writers get this. They're told by publishers that their works are awful or are simply not told anything--only given cold rejection notices that leave open imagination. Questions arise, "What'd I do wrong?" "Was it that bad?" And many others. To many writers, this is a sting too sharp.
And so the process of publishing something is a task that requires endurance, and I've seen many give up and seen many achieve victory, and know many enduring that race now.
Though I've had one work published, my collection of short stories, I never truly tried to get published and so as of yet I cannot identify with this. I take writing criticism well and so I assume that rejections won't hurt quite as bad as others. On the other hand, it could kill me.
Here's how I look at such criticism or even blank rejections; if the story was written publisher worthy it'd likely have been accepted. Simple.
Now this rule does have many drawbacks, one could have sent the work into the wrong company or maybe the editor just didn't like it and others might. But generally I believe this is true. I try not to get my feelings hurt because I don't want the book to be printed until it is print worthy. If it's not a good story, I don't want people reading it.
I'd rather wait till I'm 99 years old to have TSOF published and it be perfect, than have it printed tomorrow and it be a piece of junk. Do you follow?