Skip to main content

Writers Should Embrace Failure.

In the month of November, I received 2 rejection letters and another came in the mail yesterday.

Not that this is disheartening. Not at all! Rejection's part and parcel of writing. I'll get there one day.

Fellow writers facing rejection might find solace in Ha Jin's words from an interview published in AGNI Magazine:
The more ambitious you are, the stronger the sense of failure, because there are so many great books that have been written. When I was at Emory University I often taught a story by Kafka: “The Hunger Artist.” That story explains the psychology of a writer. Very often we write not because we want to achieve—maybe there was that desire, but so much has been accomplished. We can’t do anything better. On the other hand, you have to go on and continue. That’s why I think some sense of failure is essential to a writer from the very beginning.
So there you go. Keep on writing, y'all.

Comments

  1. If there's someone who will get there, it would be you Ted. I know it in my heart. And if you do I will make sure I purchase a copy for myself and tell all my friends to get a copy for themselves...

    But I want mine autographed. Can?

    BB

    ReplyDelete
  2. Of course, BB. Sure can one. Thanks for the support!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ted, which one is it that rejected you? That sci fi magazine again? You don't need them!

    Anyhow, you know I'm calling for submissions. So if you have a twisty tale to tell, email me first and discuss the plot. Then if we decide the story's a go, write it. You see, I have full confidence in your writing abilities. You are very good writer. You just need to come up with good plots and make your stories more exciting, that's all.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yeah, that scifi mag again (but they're nice so I don't mind.) Also Zoetrope and Paris Review (they're nice too).

    I've actually been thinking about what stories I could submit to you... er... I still got time right? Feb 07 right deadline? Hehe...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Of course, Ted!

    Xeus

    ReplyDelete
  6. Ted, I want to find out how you do it. How do you manage to survive if you keep being rejected? I mean you can eat the rejection slips can you? being rejected doesn't pay bills. So how do you do it?

    ReplyDelete
  7. I mean you _can't_ not you can. Sheesh.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Like many other writers before me, you have to get another job in the meantime that *does* pay the bills.

    ReplyDelete

Post a comment

Popular posts from this blog

HOWTO: Get Rid of Silverfish

The bane of every book collecting person: the Silverfish. DUN DUN DUNNNNN!!! How to get rid of them? If one book has been infected, place it inside an air-tight plastic bag along with some silica gel desiccant. The silica gel is important to get rid of moisture, because you will now place the sealed plastic bag with the book in it inside the freezer. Leave it in there for a couple of days so that those bugs catch their death of cold. If you're feeling particularly paranoid, (like I usually am) feel free to leave the plastic bag in there for a week. If they're not dead, then you might likely have an infestation of zombie silverfish , which is out of the scope of this blogpost. But what if a whole colony of silverfish decided to invade your whole bookcase? Then you have to make sure you're ready for war. Place a generous amount of silica gel (or if you can find it, diatomaceous earth) behind your books at the back of the shelves so that moisture levels remain low.

Hitting 1000.

Last night Sharon quoted Raman of having said to writers when they bring him their manuscripts for publishing, "How many books have you read? Have you read a thousand books? If not, get out and go read a thousand books, then come back with your manuscript." His point being, you've got to have read a lot if you want to be a writer. And I thought to myself, a thousand books isn't so bad. I've probably read more. Er...Wrong. After some quick calculations, we determined that if a person read a book per week, it would take around 20 years to reach a thousand. I'm a slow reader. I'm only 25. There's no way I've read 1000 books my whole life! When I got home I counted the books in my house. I estimate I own around 300 books, probably another 300 left at my parents's house. That's only around 600 books that I own... and a lot less that I've read! So with that number in mind, I have resolved to start keeping track of my book reading. I ne

REVIEW: Pinball, 1973 by Haruki Murakami.

UPDATE: My Wind/Pinball review can be found here . ISBN: n/a Publisher: n/a Paperback: 160 pages In Murakami fan circles, simply owning a copy of Pinball, 1973 is a mark of hardcore-ness. Like Hear the Wind Sing before it, Haruki Murakami does not allow English translations of Pinball, 1973 to be published outside of Japan. Back in the 80s, Alfred Birnbaum translated it into English and Kodansha published it as a novel for Japanese students who wanted to improve their English. While the English edition of Hear the Wind Sing continues to be reprinted and sold in Japan (and available for a moderate sum via eBay, see my review ), Kodansha stopped its reprint runs of the English edition of Pinball, 1973 and has now become a collector's item, fetching vast amounts of money on auction sites and reseller stores. Last time I checked, the cheapest copy went for USD$2500. Of course, Murakami addicts or the curious can always download a less than legal PDF of the book, painst