Professional writers know to target what they write, to their readers. Artistic writers follow the muse, with no insight or intent, to connect to a reader. It’s the beauty of the word/idea/image, etc. ! Neither of these two types of writers are devastated by a rejection letter. The first may contemplate on how to avoid this experience in the future, then file the rejection and move on to the next target market on the list. The Artistic writer may wave, the rejection, around as an example of how their genius is misunderstood.
Most writers fall somewhere between these two extremes. I’m one of these. I do have a file in my office, with rejections from agents, book publishers, and magazine editors. I have no intention of wallpapering a bathroom with them, the day after my first big sale. Every year, I clean my office and organize my files, and come across this file of rejections. It gives me pause and shows my journey, as a writer, and how things have changed, in my perception, of the publishing world.
I always said I would write my parents love story, someday. I had no idea how huge a project that could be. But I did it, after my parents died in 2005. I had to learn a new version of my craft, as a writer, to do so. Which is cool, and sent me on a journey of learning other versions, of the craft of telling story.
As I market my memoir, of my parents, to the publishing world, I have selectively targeted who I approach. It’s been sort of fun, to get the new and softer version of, a rejection. Personal notes from editors, agents and publishers – who wish – they could be the one – to take on this project – but…
Friends have suggested I self-publish. I love public speaking, I understand marketing. I’ve been told, I’m a force of nature who’s too damn optimistic and willing to learn, what needs to be done. Readers want a new love story, that is so amazing, I should just get it out there, so they can read it.
My personal challenge to write this memoir, was presented by my sister Rose, the poet. Rose stated, no matter how great the story, the reader wants to connect with someone -who’s not already dead. Shit. That would be – me…
Which is why I won’t self-publish. The story deserves a team of professionals, focused on the craftmanship of words, paragraphs, and chapters, and not be all about me, the child, instead of the love story.