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Friday, December 12, 2008


Are You There Agent? It's Me, TJ ...

Judy Blume, author of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret, and more than 25 other books, published her first three novels without an agent.

Three books.

She also has a nicely designed Web site, on which she's posted quite a lot about her personal experiences as a writer. She even includes a bit of advice on how to live a writer's life, for kids as well as adults.

Her remarks on rejection are particularly compelling:
"For two years I received nothing but rejections. One magazine, Highlights for Children, sent a form letter with a list of possible reasons for rejection. 'Does not win in competition with others,' was always checked off on mine. I still can't look at a copy of Highlights without wincing.

I would go to sleep at night feeling that I'd never be published. But I'd wake up in the morning convinced I would be. Each time I sent a story or book off to a publisher, I would sit down and begin something new. I was learning more with each effort. I was determined. Determination and hard work are as important as talent.

Don't let anyone discourage you! Yes, rejection and criticism hurt. Get used to it. Even when you're published you'll have to contend with less than glowing reviews. There is no writer who hasn't suffered."

— TJ Sullivan in LA
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Anonymous Greg Beesch said...

Like General Gordon beseiged at Khartoum, sending letter after letter requesting relief. He died standing up, in full uniform, as the Mahdi's army broke the seige. But the typical writer is more like a gulag inmate. . .wasting away on the steppes.

Friday, December 12, 2008 9:44:00 AM PST  
Blogger TJ Sullivan said...

Greg ... LOL ... thanks for the support.

Friday, December 12, 2008 9:48:00 AM PST  

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