Writing is the one occupation where you face rejection more often than not. A beginning writer probably receives a rejection letter more than 95% of the time. How do you keep your butt in the chair and your fingers on the keyboard? Here are few gems from folks who have been there:
Novelist Philip Lee Williams: Never let what you have to do keep you from doing what you want to do.
Novelist David L. Robbins*: Never define yourself by your success. Only define yourself by how you respond to your failures.
YA Novelist Jessica Burkhart: A writer needs positive people in his or her life. Sure, honesty is also necessary, but people who cut you down purposely aren’t conducive to writing success. Choose good people to have in your corner!
Novelist Vicki Hinze*: If you can quit writing, quit. There are far easier ways to earn a living. If you can’t quit, then gird your loins, jump into the fray, and go for your dream--no matter what.
Novelist Terry Kay: I can schedule lots of things, I never force characters, I'm patient with characters and I wait for them to come to me.
Lin Oliver, Executive Director of The Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators: If you have a problem, write through it. You can go back and fix it the next day.
Columnist/humorist Cappy Hall Rearick*: It's important to find your voice and the only way to find it is to write, write, write.
Playwright Evan Guilford-Blake: Care about what you write. If you don't, an audience won't either.
Poet Kezia Snipe: Poetry is a free form of expression. Use it to your advantage. Play with the words…Move them around...Make it your own. You'd be surprised what you will come up with.
Novelist Julie L. Cannon*: Keep journals - this is about becoming conscious. Write stuff about sensory imagery in a notebook. Say your windshield wipers sound like "ka-swish, ka-swish, ka-swish." Write it down. It’ll get to be part of your subconscious.
Freelance writer Sheila Hudson*: Do an excellent job, and turn the assignment in early. That creates an “in” with the editor and he/she will keep you in mind for bigger and better things.
Novelist Misty Massey: Take the advice the editor offers…If the manuscript you’ve written is something you want to sell, it’s smart to listen to the professionals when they make suggestions.
* Has taught at the SWA Writers Workshop.