On Dreaming (And Writing)

I once confessed to a professor how intimidating it was to submit my writing.  She gave me a long look and said, “Well, I think it’s fair to say that nothing was ever published that wasn’t sent out first.” There it was. In a nutshell. If you dreamed of publication, you had to send your work out. Intimidated or not.

Over the years, I have sent many things out–poems, short stories, essays, etc. Some of them have been published, some of them have not. In other words, I am well-versed in the language of rejection.  You can’t be a writer and not be.  (Well, maybe such writers exist, but I don’t know any of them.)  It’s discouraging and brutal but then, something is accepted, and your dream is fed. You feel rejuvenated for awhile. But you never know which of your submissions will be rejected and which will be accepted. You just have to send things off and hope for the best. And, no matter what, you go back to your writing in the meantime.

Because it’s the writing–the act of writing–that makes us writers.

I don’t even know how to say this next part. But people keep telling me that I have to say it out loud. Forgive me for repeating–it’s been announced elsewhere (and thanks so much for the kind words in response!)–but here goes: Henery Press will be publishing my first mystery next year. Which still feels like a dream!

And now, back to writing.

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10 thoughts on “On Dreaming (And Writing)”

  1. Congratulations! Own it, girl!!

    A few days ago a professor friend (can I say who?) and I were dealing with the stress of grading at the end of the term by pretending we could read like editors and agents. We said things like, “Your paper just didn’t grab me enough to read past the first paragraph” or “I just didn’t fall in love” or “Thanks for submitting this, but it won’t make it into the gradebook this time around. Feel free to resubmit during out next reading period.” It was sort of fun. Of course, we didn’t do any of these things.

    Now back to grading. Then back to writing.

  2. Thanks so much, Diane! I’m still pinching myself. And did I tell you I’m reading VICS right now? Loving it.

    Mary, does it get easier to say it out loud? You’ve got so many out already!

    Theresa, ha ha! And you’re right, grading first…oops.

  3. Fantastic! Congrats!

    You’re right, we don’t know which of our submissions will sell and which won’t, so we have to keep throwing them out there. I once had a writing prof tell me that if we don’t submit, we might as well burn our work. So glad that yours will be shared with the world!

  4. Sue, thanks–and that is a sobering thought about the burning.

    Theresa, I understand. Next up: poems about the joys of grading! And summer!

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