Wednesday, August 7, 2013

In the Beginning...There Was Darkness

Writers should really be provided with an accurate road map when beginning this crazy journey to publication.  Seriously, that would make it all so much easier.  A map that says begin here at point A writing said story which when completed you will submit to Publisher A.  If Publisher A accepts remain on course for Plan A.  

If Publisher A rejects they would direct the author to the next best route for their project.  Said author, revises or not according to instruction, and then goes back to their map and follows the new route to the next publisher and so it goes.  Each step a clear route on the map.

No wait that would be utopia and this is the real world. In the real world one struggles through learning craft and writing story after story that is published or not.  And eventually you may find a substitute for said map, an agent, but not before you've spent many, many hours and learned much of the process for yourself.

But first, to succeed you must enter no man's land.  It's a dark brooding place filled with highs and lows, hopes and dreams, excitement and bouts of disappointment that dive you into moments of darkness where you threaten to never write again. Don't go there - writing takes the darkness away every time. 

And there is no map.  I'm sorry to say, it's a jungle out there.  You can plot a course but it is only guesswork whether or not you'll arrive at your destination in one piece or whether your story is sturdy enough to make it to the end.

And that's why in a utopian world a map would be ideal especially as you first venture into the world offering your writing and fearing that it's about to become the sacrificial lamb at the alter of something bigger than you can quite comprehend.  Wait, that's no fear, that's reality.  If you're lucky you'll get no rejection, no scathing comments.

Scathing comments?

Maybe, maybe not.  But every rejection draws its ounce of blood.  After awhile you'll get callouses.  If you've got a strong stomach and a huge dose of fortitude, you'll make it through the dark hours where eventually there's light. 

But if you're a writer - do you really have a choice?  So strap on that backpack, pick up the map you've outlined for yourself and write on.  And whether you're a writer or not, appreciate the book you're reading just a little more as you consider its author's journey.  I know I will.

Stop by on Friday, August 9 when I'll be hosting, as part of the tour for Theo Roger's latest book - How to Get Good Reviews On Amazon.  So stop by, and check out a valuable reference for any writer's shelf.



Karen Walker said...

Hi Ryshia,
I am one of the co-hosts of ISWG and wanted to say hi. I wasn't sure this post was part of ISWG until I got to the end and saw you included the linky list for the group. I love what you wrote here. It describes the trials and tribulations of a writer so well.

Ryshia Kennie said...

Hi Karen - thanks for stopping by. Looking forward to visiting some of the blogs on the hop once I get my quota of revisions done today.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Great first IWSG post, Ryshia. I doubt there's a writer out there who can't relate. Good luck with your revisions.

Ryshia Kennie said...

Thanks Joylene - It's a nice feeling when they're done and the story has that solid, almost finished feel.

Jenna said...

Great post Ryshia! Thanks for the hop! I can't wait to trudge through them.

Ryshia Kennie said...

Hi Jenna - thanks for stopping by and don't thank me for the hop - I only signed on and attached the link. The hop is all Alex Cavanaugh (

Misha Gericke said...

Yeah, a map would be so nice. On the other hand, all the rejections make our success even better. :-D

Ryshia Kennie said...

Hi Misha - I'll have to remember that when the next rejection lands in my inbox - wait was that courting fate?!

Melissa said...

What doesn't kill us makes us stronger, right?
And YES! I definitely appreciate authors and their books more now that I write.

Welcome to the group! :)
August co-host and IWSG #110

(Be sure to post the IWSG icon at the top of your post so we don't click through and miss your posts. ;)

Elisabeth Kinsey said...

Impressive blog hop and post! :)

Ryshia Kennie said...

Melissa - thanks and I'll remember for next time.
Elisabeth - thanks

randi lee said...

Hi Ryshia from the IWSG :-) I agree with Karen. You wrote a great post about the trials of writing. We learn from rejection and we become stronger...if we allow ourselves to.

Ryshia Kennie said...

Hi Randi - Thanks for stopping by. If we allow ourselves - that is so true. I suppose that's why we need reminders. It's easy to forget that writing is one thing, forging a career another.