Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

“Reading and writing are acts of empathy and faith. Guard that trust carefully — in this rapidly changing business, it’s the only sure thing.” ~Erin Keane
"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

Monday, June 24, 2013

When a Favorite Author Writes a Bad Book

There's this bestselling author-- award-winning, Oprah interviewed-- whose writing I adore. Except the last book of hers I read was truly vomit-worthy. It was slapdash, thrown together, lame and really awful, especially compared to all the other brilliance with her name on it. That was my opinion, at least, and I reviewed it on Goodreads like I do every book I read. I gave it one star and a critical review. Not mean though, and many other reviewers had similar complaints to mine.

And I feel guilty about it. Not sure why. Out of the thousands of reader reviews on her books it's not likely she'd read mine. And if she did, what would her reaction be? "Oh my goodness, how could this person trash my work like this? It's petty and mean. What does she know anyway? I'll never write again!" Haha, not likely. I imagine she's secure enough in her own writing that she lets bad reviews slide right past if she notices them at all.

Successful authors get criticized just like everyone else if not more, but it doesn't stop them. Even poor sales and a new book not getting picked up by the publisher doesn't stop them. They keep right on doing what they love--writing books.

Like Tom Cruise, how he got so much criticism in the media awhile back. All of a sudden it was the in thing to hate Tom Cruise and make fun of him. What did he do? Just kept on making movies. He's putting out one or two films a year, and making more money than ever playing the incredibly attractive rebel action hero.

I find it inspiring to read one-star reviews on popular bestsellers. I figure if it happens to them then so what if it happens to me. Absolutely nothing should stop a determined writer. And there's no way to please everyone. That same book I could barely tolerate got plenty of 5 star reviews. People like what they like and they don't like what they don't like, and there's no accounting for taste. How could anyone not like Tom Cruise? He's gorgeous and a fantastic actor. The last two movies he did, Jack Reacher and Oblivion were awesome! 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

On Never Giving Up

The experts say that persistence is more essential than talent for the writer to have success. I really believe that. I'm still working on it. There are days I just want to give up. Writing a rough draft can be tortuous. Getting published at times seems impossible. Getting the lousy review when someone trashes your creative work can kill the spirit.

I'm motivated by others who keep going no matter what. One of those writers is Kerri Cuevas. I first got to know her through blogging. She submitted a manuscript to WiDo through one of my submission contests and the acquisitions editor took an interest in it.

Her book Deadly Kisses (WiDo Publishing, 2013) took awhile to get published-- first a rewrite and resubmit, then a long time in editing when her assigned editor left the company part way through, finally to be released in March of this year.

Deadly Kisses, a YA paranormal romance, has gotten rave reviews, such as this one: "... the perfect combination of romance, action and just enough suspense to keep you wondering . . .A well-written YA story by an amazing author." --Reviewing in Chaos

Aiden Grant has a killer kiss. Literally. And it’s not every reaper who gets to work with the Sixteenth President. Sure, Honest Abe likes to throw out history lessons with reaping assignments, but when you’re favored by the ancients, grim reaper life is pretty sweet for a newly dead seventeen-year-old.

Then things get messy.

Aiden is assigned to reap the soul of Bee, the only girl he has ever loved. When Aiden’s kiss of death fails, intertwining their souls, she is still very much alive and they are both in trouble. The ancients want Bee, who has special powers of her own, and they’ll do anything to get her.

Some rules are meant to be broken, even if that means Aiden must bargain with his own soul to save Bee. Who knew the afterlife could get so complicated?


And now Kerri has submitted the sequel to Aiden and Bee's story, and is working on the third in the series. All while taking care of her New Hampshire home and family-- including 3 kids, rabbits, goats, large garden-- along with a super-supportive husband named Carlos. (I know about Carlos because he and Kerri talk to each other in Facebook comments, it's so cute!)

This is a committed writer who is going to make it no matter what. Kerri Cuevas inspires me, and I'm just proud to know her.