Author Topic: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?  (Read 6987 times)

Offline Elodie-Caroline

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #30 on: May 19, 2008, 07:32:48 PM »
It might make our keyboards a tad sticky though eh  ;D  :o

'Playing your songs through headphones in your bedroom isn't music, it's masturbation'. I suppose the answer should have been 'And what is the problem with that?'  ;D

 

Offline Amie

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #31 on: May 20, 2008, 03:52:05 AM »
I've been writing since I was four years old, so way before being published was even an option.

Actually, this is a good point as well. I started writing stories in my head before I could write - and I never shared them with anyone else, they were just stories. I used to create dialogue between paper clips, pennies, sea shells - the pennies were often at war with one another, so that made great dialogue ;)  I constantly had a dialogue in my head - and when I learned to write, I started writing the stories down. but I never shared them with anyone, it wasn't a consideration. Actually, the first time I considered publication of any sort was when I started doing research - and then only because it was an essential for getting along in my career (scientific publications of course, not fiction). I still have reams of stuff that I have no intention of either publishing or sharing with anyone else - they're just things that amused or entertained me in some way that I didn't want to forget, so I wrote them down.
"You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet." - Kafka

Offline Linton

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #32 on: May 20, 2008, 08:17:50 AM »
I currently write for fun but clearly I would like people to read and to enjoy my novel.  I am now in the final 25% of my manuscript and thus the dreaded spectre of rejection will soon be upon me.  I realise how difficult it is for a first time novelist to be published and fully expect my share of rejection letters.  However, I feel I have improved tremendously as a writer over those first 60,000 words and I learn more every day.  I have faith in my ability and my story and I have already invested the help of a good editor who has helped and supported me tirelessly.  My contingency plan is to self-publish, if I cannot find a publisher to take me on. 

To this end I am already studying my target marketplace and the feasability of self-publishing and marketing my work.  People have succeeded by self-publishing.  Hopefully my drive and career as a sales & marketing manager will stand me in good stead in this daunting but potentially exciting task.  If I do go down that route, I will keep everyone on MWC appraised of any success and failure.

Linton

Offline John Yamrus

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #33 on: May 20, 2008, 08:24:13 AM »
  My contingency plan is to self-publish, if I cannot find a publisher to take me on. 

To this end I am already studying my target marketplace and the feasability of self-publishing and marketing my work.  People have succeeded by self-publishing.  Hopefully my drive and career as a sales & marketing manager will stand me in good stead in this daunting but potentially exciting task.  If I do go down that route, I will keep everyone on MWC appraised of any success and failure.

Linton

re self-publishing...it sounds like you have a plan...that's fantastic.  too many people are dopes about the whole thing and self-publish and think the world's going to go nuts over their golden pen-droppings just because it's out there.  doesn't happen that way.  nothing happens without a lot of thought and hard work on the part of the author...and it sounds like you understand that.  good for you!
john
Since 1970 John's published 2 novels, 18 books of poetry, and had more than 1,300 poems published in mags around the world.   His new book, (his 20TH) called CAN'T STOP NOW! is available here:

http://www.epicrites.org/

Offline Linton

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #34 on: May 20, 2008, 08:47:07 AM »
Thanks John

I value your thoughts and opinions greatly.  I hope that I can find an agent/publisher but feel it important to plan the next step if I cannot and I will plan for the eventuality in great detail.  I believe hard-work and vigourous marketing to be the key - nobody will buy my book if they do not know about it!

Linton
« Last Edit: May 20, 2008, 08:48:38 AM by Linton »

Offline John Yamrus

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #35 on: May 20, 2008, 08:55:01 AM »
Thanks John

  I believe hard-work and vigourous marketing to be the key - nobody will buy my book if they do not know about it!

Linton

you hit that one right on the head!  i don't know if you read my article from last year which was published in a now defunct magazine (i have this very real talent of driving both book and magazine publishers out of business.  i can't tell you how many of my books turned out to be the last or next to last thing that particular publisher offered to the public!)...magazine called ART WITH WORDS.  the article was called SO, YOU WANNA GET PUBLISHED!  while it's aimed specifically at people who want to get along with poetry, it may contain a thing or two of interest for you with your novel.  i'll copy it here.

So, you wanna get published!
by
John Yamrus
[/b]

      One of the questions i’m most often asked is “how does somebody go about getting their poems published?”  you know the kind of stuff…someone will invariably come up to me after a reading and say something like: “my son wants to be a writer.  he writes the nicest poems and wants to publish them some day…can you help him out?” my first response is always to tell that person to always have a fall-back, because if he or she thinks they’re going to make any money at this, then they’re deluding themselves or have been sorely misinformed.  i’ve been publishing for 38 years and it’s only in recent years that i’ve made anything more than lunch money at it.  no, poetry’s a game for amateurs.  that’s not even true.  an “amateur” is someone who does something solely out of love for what they’re doing.  if that’s all you’re doing…if you’re not compelled  to write poems…to dig into your heart and see if you can come up with something fresh and true and alive…if you’re only writing poetry because you “love” to do it then go post your poems on some internet site and be happy with everyone commenting on your words with statements like “thanks for the great read” and “well said” and “nice write”. 
     if you want to be a writer…if you TRULY want to be a writer (and i’m not saying “poet” here, because that term’s been so devalued these days by everyone and his brother calling themselves poets that it’s become practically worthless.  even after 17 published books i refuse to call myself a poet because i feel i haven’t yet earned the term.)…anyway, if you TRULY want to be a writer who stands out of the crowd then you MUST be in print.     okay, you can cut a lot of corners and go directly to people like Publish America and Lulu who will print your book for nothing or practically next to nothing…but if you don’t first do your homework and lay a good solid foundation, then i absolutely guarantee you that your book won’t sell more than a hundred copies and most of them will be to family and friends and few of those copies will ever get read because they’re only buying your book to be nice to you or to get you off their back.  guaranteed.
     no, the only real way to get published is to do it the hard way…one step at a time.  and that takes work and dedication and perseverance.  let me back up a bit right now.  as a writer you have to be able to split yourself in two.  there’s got to be the artistic “writer” side of you…the one who does the writing and thinking and loving and growing.  then there’s got to be the level-headed “business” side to you as well.  i can’t stress this hard enough or often enough that unless you work at it with a plan, and work at it as often as you can, then you’re setting yourself up for failure.  let’s face it…becoming a published, respected writer takes a plan that’s followed and maintained and modified over the years just like any other venture.  first of all you need to start sending things off to magazines…print magazines.  and if you’re thinking right now “where do i find print magazines that publish poetry?” then stop reading this right now because you’re wasting my time and yours, because you don’t care enough to do what it takes.  Go to Borders or Barnes and Noble…check out the magazines.  there’s tons of magazines.  buy a couple and start reading.  chances are they have ads in them for other magazines.  check those out as well.  start doing your homework.  start making lists of magazines you’re going to submit to.  better yet, go into any one of those stores and buy yourself a copy of “Poet’s Market”.  for someone just starting out it’s an indispensable tool.  it lists thousands of small magazines and small publishers who publish poetry.  and if you contact any one of them and they mention money…YOUR money…run for the hills.  you’ve seen the ads…”Publisher looking for poets”…”let your poems earn big bucks”.  the only thing these people are looking to do is part you from your big bucks.
          Poet’s Market lists all sorts of good things…the magazine or book publishers who do poetry, and the listings contain all sorts of great information like the contact people, the type of poetry they’re looking for, the guidelines for submission etc etc etc.
     like i said…have a plan.  start small.  don’t think that you’re going to get anywhere by starting off sending your work to The Paris Review or The New Yorker.  you’re wasting your time.  start small.  take a small first step.
     let’s talk about basics.  it’s like anything else.  the more you do it, the better you’re going to get at it.  sending stuff out to the magazines is an acquired habit just like anything else. 
     do something every day.  write something.  send something off to a magazine.  edit something you’ve written.  send something off to another magazine.  i don’t care what it is, but do something every single day.  and don’t give up.  and don’t send some poems off to a magazine and sit back and wait till you get an answer.  no, put together another batch of poems (different poems.  never have duplicate submissions circulating) and send them off to another magazine.  keep records of what you’ve sent to each magazine and what the results were.  this will keep you from duplicating efforts and also give you a better idea of which of your poems they liked or didn’t.  chances are you’re going to start off by getting rejected.  don’t worry, it happens to everyone and never goes away.  like i said, i’ve been publishing for 38 years… i’ve had nearly 900 poems published in magazines around the world and still get more rejections than acceptances.  if i had to make a guess, i’d estimate that over the years i’ve had something like 3000 rejections.  that’s just part of the game.  too often i talk to people who say “i want to be a writer, but i sent some poems to two different magazines and they got rejected”.  tough.  send more out.  getting published is not brain surgery.  anybody can get published if they want it bad enough and try hard enough.  it’s strictly a numbers game.  almost like sales.  the more doors you knock on, the better your chances are.  so, keep things in the mail.
     and when you send things out to magazines, respect the editors.  don’t send works in progress, or sloppy work.  don’t expect the editors to do your job for you.  they’re too busy for that.  years ago i used to edit two different little magazines and while the circulation was next to nothing i used to get 15 to 20 submissions a day and anything that i opened up that didn’t look complete or professional didn’t even get a second look.  it went right in the can.       
     i’m jumping around a bit here, but i’m trying to cover a lot of territory in a short space of time.  so, that being said, let’s talk again about why i’m suggesting you start with the print magazines…because like it or not, no matter how small or ratty the magazine is, publication (whether you admit it or not) commands respect.  that’s where the real audience is.  unlike the internet, where everything’s free, people have to shell out their hard earned cash to buy a magazine.  that means something.  that shows they’re serious. 
     okay, so you start sending stuff out to magazines and you’re getting some feedback…usually at first it’ll be negative because you don’t know anyone and nobody knows you.  when you get a rejection, don’t just throw it away and move on to the next one…send the editor a thank you letter or e-mail or note.  thank him or her for taking the time to read your work and say “i know you didn’t like what i’d sent, but might you be interested in seeing something else?  or, do you know of another magazine that you think might be a better fit for my poems?”  network.  build up your contacts.  then, when you finally get something accepted somewhere (and i guarantee you will, if you try hard enough and look hard enough), use that to your advantage.  send more poems out to other magazines with a note saying something like:  “i recently had some of my other poems accepted by Buttcheek magazine.  i’m hoping you’ll find something here that you like”.
     it’ll take time.  it won’t happen overnight.  but, sooner or later you’ll start to build up a readership.  people will recognize your name.  then, after a while you’ll start to know which magazines also have a book publishing side to them and by that time you’ll be more familiar with the editors and you won’t be afraid or embarrassed to ask them if they’d be interested in seeing a manuscript for a book.  that’s it.  there’s no big secret to it.  no mystery.  it’s just a matter of hard work and determination. 
     then, when you finally get your book published, people will know your name.  a few at least.  certainly more than your Aunt Mary and your fat cousin Tony.
     please, don’t let yourself be counted among those “artistes” who think the world’s going to beat a path to your door because you’re just so damned good and deserve to be published and known the world over.  it’s just not going to happen.  it’s up to you.  you’ve got to make it happen. 
     when i was a kid, growing up, just starting out wanting to be a writer, the guys i hung with also wanted to be writers and they had so much more talent than me…but they couldn’t be bothered to look at the “business” side of this because they were above that…they were artists.  they figured that they were so good that word would get around about them and people would come to them.  they’re still very talented.  and they’re still waiting.
     that’s it.  i’ve talked enough.  now it’s your turn.  let’s see if you’ve got what it takes.
Since 1970 John's published 2 novels, 18 books of poetry, and had more than 1,300 poems published in mags around the world.   His new book, (his 20TH) called CAN'T STOP NOW! is available here:

http://www.epicrites.org/

Offline SteveJ

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #36 on: May 20, 2008, 09:18:43 AM »
Best of luck, Linton, I hope your efforts are rewarded, mate :) :)
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Offline bobby digital

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #37 on: May 20, 2008, 02:11:02 PM »
In a word, yes...

When I first  put pen to paper opened ms word to write creatively, thoughts of getting published were far from me. I mean sure, as I've 'developed  ::)' and continued to write, I've realized that having your ms published is the ultimate compliment. After all we are 'writers'

Side note: I don't consider myself a 'writer' just yet.

But even if I knew beforehand that my ms would never get into print, I'd still write for me.

bobby
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Offline Talisman

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #38 on: May 22, 2008, 03:48:09 AM »
When I think about it, most of the stuff I write is published in one form or another, and I probably would find it quite hard not to write with this aim in mind - although I am sure that I could. When I was writing my book, it never occured to me that it wouldn't get published - even if I had to do it myself, which I did end up doing. I still write on most days, even if only for my blog site, but even that is a form of publishing, as indeed is writing stuff on here. I also edit the local newsletter for the village where I live, and so write quite a lot of stuff for that - this month I have interviewed one of our residents where was the first poet laureate in the area, written a piece about the nearby rehab facilities for wounded soldiers at Headley Court, some stuff about fathers day etc. Okay it is only circulated to around 600 residents, but that is still being published ! It all depends I suppose though on how you define being published. 
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Offline John Yamrus

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #39 on: May 22, 2008, 08:10:08 AM »
Talisman...(god, how i hate using these damned screen names!)...congratulations on your publications and your newsletter etc etc...how did your novel do?  where is it available?  what's it about?
let me know.
john
Since 1970 John's published 2 novels, 18 books of poetry, and had more than 1,300 poems published in mags around the world.   His new book, (his 20TH) called CAN'T STOP NOW! is available here:

http://www.epicrites.org/

Offline DGSquared

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #40 on: May 22, 2008, 08:18:39 PM »
Absolutely. It's what keeps me sane sometimes.  Muwahahahah!
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Offline Brix

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Re: Would you write if you knew you would not get published?
« Reply #41 on: June 10, 2008, 03:09:07 AM »
Of course I would still write. I am writing now aren't I? And I am not getting published anytime soon. ;D