What must-have qualities would you say an author needs to become published and keep being published in the industry?
Talent plus perseverance. I recently asked a group of authors how many times they rewrote their novels before they saw publication. Seven was the average response. And I heard N.K. Jemisin say recently that she had worked on The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms for around ten years before it saw publication. Do you remember that old board game where you pulled levers out until all the marbles but one dropped away? I have probably just dated myself horribly, but that’s how I see a career in the entertainment arts. Banging your head against the wall until the wall collapses, because you sure as hell aren’t going to. Artist John Picacio describes this as, “There’s Plan A. And if that doesn’t work, there’s Plan A. And if that doesn’t work, there’s Plan A.” (Note: He’s not talking about being unrealistically inflexible. He’s talking about never giving up the goal of being a working professional.)
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
The World According to Lou," which really tickles me. I don't think she knows that it was The World According to Garp by John Irving that first made me want to choose this writing/publishing life. Anyway, I'm grateful for the interview, but please ignore her when she suggests that nonsense about my giving away my beer. Check out the whole interview, but here's a sample: