"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown
"Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it." ~Jesse Stuart
"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf
Thursday, April 8, 2010
How Virginia Woolf Became a Novelist
But to tell you my story-- it is a simple one. You have only got to figure to yourselves a girl in a bedroom with a pen in her hand. She had only to move that pen from left to right--from ten o'clock to one. Then it occurred to her to do what is simple and cheap enough after all--to slip a few of those pages into an envelope, fix a penny stamp in the corner, and drop the envelope into the red box at the corner. It was then that I became a journalist; and my effort was rewarded on the first day of the following month--a very glorious day it was for me--by a letter from an editor containing a cheque for one pound ten shillings and sixpence. But to show you how little I deserve to be called a professional woman, how little I know of the struggles and difficulties of such lives, I have to admit that instead of spending that sum upon bread and butter, rent, shoes and stockings, or butcher's bills, I went out and bought a cat--a beautiful cat, a Persian cat, which very soon involved me with bitter disputes with my neighbors.
Then I grew ambitious. A Persian cat is all very well, I said; but a Persian cat is not enough. I must have a motor-car. And it was thus that I became a novelist--for it is a very strange thing that people will give you a motor-car if you will tell them a story. It is a still stranger thing that there is nothing so delightful in the world as telling stories. (from Professions for Women by Virginia Woolf)
So fast forward to today's writer who does pretty much the same thing:
Be grateful (hopefully) when someone actually pays money to read our work.
That's the best part. Not so much the money, since it's never enough anyway, but to know that people have paid money for your book. And to recognize, with gratitude, that "there is nothing so delightful in the world as telling stories."
Don't you love little tales like this that make it all sound so easy? Well, it may not be easy but it is simple. Write, finish, submit, and be grateful for every small success!
P.S. I am grateful for the prizes I've won lately on blogs, and here's another one I'm entering over at Lola's blog Sharp Pen Dull Sword Go check it out!