This week I'm bringing in the big guns: People who've traveled down this long and winding road toward publication. Some of them already have book deals. Some have agents. Some have both. They've "made" it.
I want to spotlight someone each day this week to hopefully inspire you, provide a beam of hope along your way, and really prove that you CAN succeed in this crazy business. You CAN go from slush-pile-nothing to agented to published author. Yes, I'm looking at you. YOU.
But I'm not the only one on-board this positivity wagon. Join us this week for 75 (yes 75!) success stories! Then dream big. Go forth and query. Conquer.
Click here for more inspiration: Lisa and Laura Roecker, Beth Revis, Leah Clifford, Victoria Schwab, Kirsten Hubbard, Susan Adrian, Dawn Metcalf, Kim Harrington, Carrie Harris, Amy Holder, Kathy McCullough, Suzette Saxton and Bethany Wiggins, Gretchen McNeil and Tiffany Schmidt.
I will be featured on Lisa and Laura Roecker's blog this Friday (and just so you know, I asked LiLa to do an interview and they had the idea to spread it across the Interwebz. They are genius personified. So yeah). Please go check out all the posts this week, because you never know who's going to say exactly what you need to hear to keep moving forward.
First up! The loverly Natalie Whipple.
RELAX I'M A NINJA in a tweet: Tosh--nerd/ninja--must figure out who's behind a string of murders and discovers he's more involved than he thought.
Was there ever a time you felt like giving up? Why didn't you?
If I'm being honest, I feel like giving up almost every week lately. And I've almost given up probably about four hundred times in the past four or so years. The business is hard to get into. And slow moving. And sometimes you're just going to feel like banging your head against the wall is the better option.
Why don't I give up? The answer changes. Sometimes it's because I want this--I want it so bad it aches that I'm not quite there yet. Sometimes it's because I've already gotten this far [Elana interrupts to say that Natalie's agent is Nathan Bransford, so she has made it quite far], and it would be really lame to give up now. Sometimes it's just the fact that I'm freaking stubborn, and I refuse to let this beat me.
Whatever the reason is on a particular day, I grab onto it and don't let go.
What has been the hardest part of your road to publication so far? And why?
Not knowing where or when the road will "end," so to speak. The wondering, the waiting--that's what has been the most difficult trial through every stage. Is this the day my dreams will be reality? Or is it the day they'll be set back another six weeks?
You can only live in hypotheticals for so long before you start to lose it, before you begin to question everything you do as a writer. And at that point you have to find the inner strength to move forward. You have to make the choice to live as presently as possible, and be okay with things not happening when you hope they will.
What's your best advice to aspiring authors?
I would say not to be so hard on yourself. There are enough people out there waiting to tear you down, don't be one of them.
Super Secret: If you could meet anyone, alive or dead, who would it be?
Hmm, I'm so not good at picking. I want to meet too many people. Today I guess I'll say Tolkien, because he was a linguist and I majored in English linguistics. I'd love to take a class from him or something.
Find Natalie online:
Her blog, Between Fact and Fiction