Friday, June 10, 2011

Fiction Friday: Author Mary DeMuth

Today is the last day for the Author Buzz contest! If you are here after reading the Author Buzz letter, you can leave a comment at this post. Thanks for stopping by!

This week I have a guest post from Mary DeMuth, who has written a fabulous new ebook for those of you who are looking to get published in either nonfiction or fiction. I will let Mary take it from here, but I would urge you to get this valuable resource if you have any desire to be published.

I spent years and years writing before my big publishing break came. I practiced Malcolm Gladwell’s advice to write 10,000 hours (link: ). I attended conferences. I submitted to several critique groups. I entered contests. I wrote and wrote and wrote. Recently I downloaded my writing journey and publishing advice into an ebook entitled The 11 Secrets of Getting Published. In that book, I have a section entitled “I’d be published, but...” Below is one of my favorite entries. And it involves one of the She Reads founders, Ariel Lawhon!

I’d be published, but I’m not where I want to be . . . yet.

Ariel wrote:

I’d like to be (re)published but...I want to grow and master the craft of writing first. It’s an ongoing process I know, and no one ever arrives at perfection, but I don’t want to settle for the level of skill I have today.

I’ve had the privilege of corresponding privately with Ariel, and I can attest to you that she’s the real thing. She is passionate about improving. She wants her words to have impact, and she intrinsically knows when they’re not quite up to par with her vision of excellence.

This is a great place to be, though sometimes frustrating. I’d encourage those of you who have had some success in publishing, but have pulled back to improve your craft, to keep at it. But also rest in where you are and continue to send things out. I fear that perfectionism may hold some of us back from submitting. If you don’t submit when you’re not exactly where you want to be, you won’t have the opportunity to hear from editors how exactly you can improve.

The truth is: we don’t usually improve in our writing in a vacuum, or by ourselves. Yes, it’s important (vitally so) that we read great books and write in isolation, but there comes a time when we need to be okay with where we are and submit so others can help hone us.

I am a published writer because I worked hard on craft. But I’m also a published writer because I took risks. I sent things out. I have several books that were never bought. But some were. And every time I had the privilege of professional editing, I improved.

So Ariel, go forth. Keep working on your craft, but don’t be shy about submitting. In that process you will grow.

If you’d like to learn everything I know about traditional publishing and you only have a few bucks to spare, consider purchasing my $2.99 ebook, The 11 Secrets of Getting Published.



My next novel, The Muir House, releases in two short weeks! It’s my 11th book. Link:

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1 comment:

Jennifer said...

Hi just wanted to enter the contest from Authur Buzz for a chance to win your book...maybe I did not understand the instructions. But I would like to be included in the drawing...thanks