Friday, October 27, 2006

One of the best writers you'll never read

  • My writing is "eloquent, addictive and genuinely funny" and "wonderfully readable,"* but not good enough to print. The rejection letters for my novel continue. It's just piling on now. I won't say this is the most miserable I've ever been. It's not. But it's arguably the most miserable I've been in a situation that didn't involve some girl wanting to get away from me.

  • I should, though, say thank you to the people who send me encouraging e-mails. I really do appreciate it, even though I am crap at showing my appreciation. I am trying to develop a more positive attitude about things and not focus so much on previous failures. Hopefully I will sort myself out before I burn up everyone's goodwill.
    My favourite message of goodwill as of late came from my grandmother, who has a brilliant way of at once commiserating and telling me to shut my whining cake hole.
    "(Your experience brings) back memories of me registering for courses at University of Houston," she wrote, "when I finished my degree at age 33 with three children... I drove 50 miles to the campus three days a week, alone."
    She also provided me with a nifty turn of phrase that perhaps I will use when I want to sound wise: "You can't learn anything yesterday."
    Obviously that sage wisdom would sound much better if it had been worked into limerick read by Terry Wogan (how's that for esotericism, eh? For those of you playing along at home, Wogan is an iconic radio presenter in the UK and he often reads out touching or lightly amusing poems sent in by listeners).

  • Dude. He hates that monkey

  • Good name for a band: Monkey Hater

    *I run the risk of committing major faux pas by blogging direct quotes from rejection letters, so I should point out that I genuinely appreciate the comments and I don't hold it against these editors for deciding against taking up my book. It's perfectly logical to me that if they don't see themselves successfully publishing my book, they would not want to take on the project. It's a business decision for them.

    Anonymous said...

    Hang in there. You'll get published, it just takes a while (so I hear). And when you do get published, and come through Arizona on your book tour, you'll recognize me as the guy in the back of the room yelling "I told you so!" ;)

    Sarah Stevenson said...

    It'll happen. Your writing will strike that right person at the right time, and it'll all be great. (When that time might be, I have no idea. I'm still waiting for it myself.) At least your rejection letters had reasons other than variations of "we cannot take on your book at this time."

    Crystal said...

    OMG is that ALF???

    WHERE the hell is mr. tanner????

    Anonymous said...

    Hey, look at me with 2 comments on the same post...

    Anyhoo, once I've got my NaNo done and extensively rewritten, I plan on trying to get it published.

    As part of that, I expect I'll blog the various ways I can come up with of destroying rejection letters. Just off the top of my head there's burning, shredding, burying, throwing under a bus, sending to junk mailers(with any identifying info about me and the rejector obscured, of course)....

    I've read that one shouldn't keep them. If you'd like to join in the fun, you'll be welcome.

    Anonymous said...

    Chris, as one who has gone through some very rough times and ended up on the other side, my recommendation is to wallow in it. Suffer. But don’t simply become morose. Analyze your life and your situation to determine what you don’t like and what YOU can do to change it. Don’t hang your happiness on anyone else, but be open to recognizing other peoples’ successes in areas important to you, and learn from them. Well-meaning friends and family will try to soften this experience for you because they hate to see you suffer, but the truth is that suffering is necessary for personal growth. If everything were going OK, what impetus would there be to change? You chose a path different from the lower-risk path of getting through high school, college, beginning a career, marrying, and having a family. I am not disparaging that path, there are many fine people on that path, but it generally doesn’t lead to the deep introspection that comes from taking risks, failing, and figuring out how to come through on the other side smarter, happier, and more confident in your abilities to survive. Crossroads are scary places and that seems to be where you are, if you allow it. So, experience the pain, figure out which path forward will give you and Rachel what you want out of life, and then go for it. You are smart enough to do this.

    Chris Cope said...

    Hee, hee. Spot the devout Catholic in these comments.

    (PS -- Thanks, Kerry. I know what you mean)