Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Scott Turow Offers Novel Writing Advice: "Persistence Is Critical"

Scott Turow Offers Novel Writing Advice: "Persistence Is Critical"

This Galleycat note popped into my email box just at the right moment. How many of us have reached a point where you think, "What am I doing this for? I must be mad!" Your life is bound up with a writing project that is all-consuming. You are starting to bore your friends and loved ones with blow-by-blow details of the working of the various characters populating your imaginary landscape ... and then AAAAARGH! You read (yet again) of (yet another) unknown debut author who has arrived on the literary scene with a glittering debut that eclipses even the most elaborate of your success fantasies. You're tired, maybe been working too hard, and now you feel that your goal (fame/fortune/both) is slipping away. You wonder how that darn author managed to find a story so close to your own. You wonder how it is that a genre/theme/topic you were told is now passe suddenly appears as the new flavor of the publishing month? It's crazy, confusing, can be very depressing ... but as the man says, "Persistence is critical!"

I have persisted in my own country (South Africa) where, traditionally, local authors are scorned in favor of overseas ones because somehow there's a weird mentality that if it's imported it must be good and if it's local, it must be sub-standard. However, I now have an interested distributor and things are looking good. Of course he has warned me that sales are usually low for a first-time author, don't get my hopes up etc etc. But my hopes are soaring high!
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