Monday, November 19, 2007

A to Z Travels

Posted by Lisa

(You've got to try this writing exercise: starting each sentence with consecutive letters of the alphabet. Grace Talusan taught it to me. She's a Grub Street instructer and writer extraordinaire)

New York City

Amazing, isn’t it? Brilliant writing was their first step in the right direction. Couple that with tenacity, and the end result was editor interest in both Amy and Lynne’s newly completed novels.

Don’t think for a minute that either of these members of our writers’ group had it easy. Either of them could have thrown up their hands in exasperation when they received feedback at our meetings. Forge ahead, now matter the challenge before them, that’s their philosophy, their way to meet with success.

Grub Street has an annual conference. Held each spring, the Muse & the Marketplace is an event not to be missed. I went for the first time in 2005, at Amy’s suggestion. Juggling writing with work and family, at first I wondered how it could be done. Kudos to writers for organizing events such as these that “show” and “tell” writers it can be done.

Looking back, I realize how far each of us in the writers’ group has come since those early days. Making the commitment to becoming a writer is truly a journey, in time, and knowledge, and confidence, and skill. Next entries, for both Amy and Lynne, will document recent trips to New York. Over the past week, each has traveled to the Big Apple to meet with their editors. Publishing their work is a dream come true.

Quoting Oscar Wilde,

“Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.”

Risking failure is a chance any writer takes. Show me a writer, and I’ll show you a fool. Taking those dreams and turning them into reality is what Amy and Lynne did.

Usually, people hear someone’s writing a novel and they roll their eyes or nod politely. Very often, they imagine the whole idea must be a big waste of time. When regular people “pretend” they're writers, the rest of the world frowns. Xeroxing your butt at the office gains a person more respect than taking time to write during your half-hour lunch break in corporate America.

You are a regular person, just like Amy and Lynne. Zero in on their blog entries this week and learn that for regular people, dreams can come true!

6 comments:

The Writers' Group said...

Amazing! But do we now need to follow suit? Curses! (I could use a boost like this; great idea! Also, love, love, love the Xeroxing line.)

Hannah

five said...

Incredible, Lisa. Seriously, WOW! Now, can you start at Z and work backwards? :)
This was a pleasure to read. Thanks,
Mo

Lisa said...

This is too cool -- and the content was so valid that I forgot what you were doing. I can't believe you managed this alphabetic exercise.

Maprilynne said...

Very cool, but also true. When my *cough,cough* book sold last week, *cough,cough* I told my husband, "This is the kind of thing that happens to other people." We tend to think that way, but it really does happen to normal, every day people who work hard and stick to it . . . Just like Amy and Lynne!!!

Grace T said...

This is fantastic, Lisa!!! Loved it. I read not only becuase I enjoyed it, because I knew that you would delight and thrill me with what you came up with for those hard ones--X, Y, Z.

Hope you are well.

Lisa Marnell said...

Thanks all for the nice feedback, and thank Grace for showing me this exercise in your wonderful Grub Street course last spring.

Try this exercise and send it to us! It took me 23 minutes last night to write this. Try to beat my record.