Wednesday, August 29, 2007

DAY FOUR MAUI WRITERS RETREAT HELPING EACH OTHER

Lisa, Holly and Mindy posing for me. We are all exhausted yet inspired.

9:30 pm. Tomorrow is the last day of the retreat. A half day. I'm trying to figure out if I can fit in a massage. I hope so. I finished my scene but I'm still dissatisfied. I see where my voice falters and my writerly self intrudes.
I start to see that by recognizing this failure in others I can see it in my own pages. I had three hours of sleep last night and yet find it difficult to rest and relax.
I must sleep. Holly kept putting drops of visine in my eyes each time she noticed they were red. I must look like some werewolf or vampire. Talk to Holly. She sees them in everyone's project.
Tomorrow we finish looking at shortened paragraphs that pitch the premise of our novels. Unagented writers are preparing to talk to agents and editors. I feel their nervousness and yearn to say it's Okay to be stressed. I long to offer reassurances that they will obtain representation. But I can't. After the elation of the retreat and working on projects comes now the bitter reality for some.
And my heart goes out to them.
Wanting it badly does not mean getting.
Perseverance is the trait that is needed here.
Tenacity.
Stubborness.
Determination.
Getting up again...and again...and again...
Then once more.
And again.

7 comments:

Therese said...

You said it!

Perseverance--and sleep, Pat! Some writers need sleep! :)

Zany Mom said...

And here I am, 2 pages into a new novel, and now the other character says, try my POV! You'll like it! Meanwhile, he wishes everyone in the world would leave him the hell alone...

How come my characters will never do what *I* want??

Heidi the Hick said...

It's so oddly comforting to hear you say that not all of us will find representation.

Huh?

yeah. Because every time I am told that I'll "make it" I hear a little voice scream "There's no guarantee!"

It feels good to me to have an affirmation that doubts are normal and that I have to keep working.

Luckily I'm pretty stubborn...

Manic Mom said...

Oh! I wish I were there! (was there, were there? Who the hell knows!!!)...

I was at B&N the other day, and Lottery was on the New Fiction table, yet it wasn't displayed properly for my taste, so I had to just move it up front a little more!

How dare they!!!!

ORION said...

ha ha ha ha manic! Good for you.
LOTTERY readers of the world UNITE!!!
You all need to think about coming to the Maui retreat and conference- it is the best investment that I have made in my career - bar none!
There are a ton of my blog buddies here-- too cool...

Kim Stagliano said...

Manic that's funny! I went into a B&N today to look for Perry. He was cramped on a BOTTOM SHELF (because of the Wood, "W") and so I pretended Pat's last name started with a V..... And I couldn't find Perry in the Border's across the street (yes, I went into 2 stores to look because my kids started school today and I wanted to spend as much time near coffee and books as I could) and Perry was no where to be found near the front of the store. That kinda ticked me off. Pat, send your goons to the Borders in Farmington CT on Route 9 ASAP!

Maprilynne said...

After obtaining representation is is hard not to feel bad for people who haven't--especially if they have been working a long time. It took me over a year to get my agent, but that is nothing compared to some of the people I know. I see them continue plugging away despite lots of rejections (or worse, lots of requests for full that just don't go anywhere.) It make me wonder why. I don't think there's anything extra special about me. And sometimes I wonder if I would have kept up the search if it had taken me two, three, five years. Would I have the tenacity some of these people have? Maybe . . . but maybe not. I wish it was just a numbers game--or that there was a time limit. But unfortunately there's not. Makes me very grateful that my agent was crazy enough to sign me.