Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Friday, 24 September 2010

Get out there and mingle

Our Wrekin Writer sub-group is going well. We had a meeting in a local pub on Wednesday night (well that was our excuse!) We went through one of the groups short stories they were having trouble with. It was a useful exercise as I think sometimes other people can pinpoint what is working and what isn't working in your story and can maybe suggest ways it might be improved.

We also decided to do some target practice and send some letters and tips out to magazines to see how many we can get published. I recently got a tip in Prima magazine and I had forgotten how satisfying it is to get a letter/tip in. They may be small but they still boost confidence.

Time and time again I hear other writers say they are thinking giving up submitting work because they keep getting rejections. I know what it feels like as I have been there (and I still am). We all have rejections  -  no matter how experienced we are. But it can be frustrating and drain your motivation, especially when you make those first tentative steps towards trying to get your work published.

My advice will always be to keep trying. You can't get published what you don't submit. I think you need to change your attitude towards rejection and see it as a positive learning tool rather than a negative dead end. Don't give up after sending it to one editor who has rejected it.  I sent an article to one magazine editor who rejected it (without reading it). They had requested the photographs first and rejected it because the photographs weren't up to their standard. So, instead of wallowing in self pity and throwing a strop, I thought to myself, fine  - I'll send it somewhere else! I did and they published the article, photos and all, and accepted a subsequent article I sent them! One editor's loss is another one's gain!  So don't ever give up.

Still no news on the short story front - oh hum! I haven't had much chance to finish any more or submit them but I'm on the case. You have to be in it to win it! Oh, and don't forget to get out and mingle with other writers once in a while  -  it makes all the difference.

Happy writing

Julie xx


Carole Anne Carr said...

Excellent advice, Julie. My new resolution is to buy a car for myself, I recently sold mine, and with only one car between myself and Hubs it is very limiting. New motto, must get out more! Hugs..

Julie P said...

Thank you, Carole!

It's so tempting for writers to hide themselves away, chained to their computer desks isn't it. I like meeting with other writers - it's great to chat about the ups and downs of the writing/publishing process. I find you learn so much.

I hope you get your new car soon. We've only had one car for years - but now I've started driving again I'm finding it annoying as Dave has the car for work, so I don't have access to the car whn I'd like too. Particularly when it's belting it down with rain and I have to walk Isobel up to school in it!

Isobel says thank you for her birthday card and money - we did send thank you cards out but I'm aware that one or two of her relatives haven't yet received them - I suspect they've got lost in the post as we sent them the Tues after her birthday - hey ho!

See you soon

Julie xx

Anonymous said...

Dear Julie - thank your so much for your response. I very much appreciate it. If it is of any help to other writers the second story I've just had accepted by a magazine was written over fifteen year ago and rejected several times. I rooted it out recently had a quick rewrite - not much at all - and changed the opening paragraph. Hey Presto - I've just sold it first time out. I suppose the message is that many of the stories we write may not be right for the time, the magazine, the editor or simply need a little more time to simmer a few extra ingredients and they're done! Thanks again for your help and good luck with your writing. All good wishes Kath

Simon Whaley said...

So, you have to be drunk in order to make improvements on your texts then? That's where I'm going wrong!

Julie P said...

Good excuse to open a bottle, Simon.


Julie xx