Tag Archives: accomplishment

Writer Versus Publisher

As a writer first and foremost, I have, understandably, always had a motherly connection to my work. I conceived of an idea, nurtured the idea into a storyline, created the characters. Then I allowed the whole creature to evolve into the story it would become. I am mostly a panster type writer. I start my journeys with a tank of gas and a credit card, with no idea where I will end up. My characters introduce themselves to me slowly, over time. I fall in love with them, and they never fail to surprise me time and again.

The first time I encountered the independence of characters whom I thought I had created, was in my first novel, Remember Me. I set up my protagonists to experience their first kiss – only to watch their dialogue provoke a heated argument that had one storming off in one direction and the other standing there, like myself, wondering what the hay just happened.

It was at that moment that I realized I was a writer.

I accepted that every serious work I create – the ones that take me away and really end up creating themselves – becomes a part of me. I know my characters as well as my own family members – probably better. I travel their path with them, feeling their emotions as fiercely as they themselves do. They are as real to me as anyone else I know.

What never occurred to me until recently, however, is that other writers feel the same way about their works. Just as attached. Just as affected.

So when I received our first query – a professional quality, well-constructed, attention grabbing request to view an authors work – I was in no way prepared for the rush of emotion that came with it.

Here was an author, like me, who was offering to trust me with her work, something she has poured a little of her heart and soul into. She was willing to trust me with her precious creation. She was asking me to be its godmother.

The weight of the responsibility landed on me with a force that took my breath. The urge to run away was barely exceeded by the excitement and the privilege of having her entrust her work to me. Were I able to pick up this new little being, my hands would be shaking and I would be holding it close to my own heart, breathing its scent, holding its hand, stroking its cheek.

It was a little overwhelming.

I reread her query. I printed it out and hung it on the wall. I sat for quite some time just looking at it. And after a good deal of deliberation, I decided that, yes, not only did I want to see her story, but I vowed to treat it with the reverence it deserved, to respect the effort that went into creating it, and to do everything in my power to present it to the world with pride and enthusiasm as if it were my own.

It was at that moment that I became a publisher.

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With Hope and a Kick in the Pants

Romantic Shorts is an idea that’s floated around my head/office/garbage can/notebook/purse/soul for almost twenty years. But now that it’s ‘out there,’ I am suffering from the most conflicting of feelings.

At times, I am overwhelmed with a sense of euphoric excitement akin to the I’M-GETTIN’-A-PUPPY-FOR-CHRISTMAS!! feeling I had when I was six. (I didn’t get the puppy, but I do remember the feeling.) I’m doing something that I am absolutely IN LOVE with!

But then there’s the doubt/fear/certainty that my dream job will fall flat, and I won’t even have the dream any more.

Then that fades, and I can see the potential for me, for new writers, for readers, for students, for moms, for ideas. It’s like looking at a clear night sky at the cottage; the longer you look the more stars you see and the brighter they get!

And then you realize how small and insignificant you are.

How will I know when this baby is breathing on its own?
How will I know if it’s dead?
Oh that it will grow up to be a fine, upstanding citizen…
What if it ends up marrying ‘Snake’ and finds itself a career in hard core porn?

I guess that if that kind of worry had a way of stopping us from acting on our deepest desires, the human race would have died out long ago.

And so, here is my baby – out there for everyone to love/hate/help/kill/watch/enjoy. Time will tell, and I now have no choice but to follow this road I’ve chosen.

It is my greatest hope that I will one day read what I have just written and laugh.

And maybe write about how foolish I was to worry about any of this at all.

Alexandra Brown, Chief Operations Manager

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StumbledUpon Eat, Pray, Love and the Creative Genius

Found a 5 carat diamond in my pocket today.

So I signed up with StumbleUpon.com because I thought it might be interesting. I picked a bunch of things that might be of interest for Romantic Shorts. StumbleUpon starts showing me websites that might suit my criteria.

Of the first five pages, two misses, two hits, and then – WOW!

A twenty minute or so talk on TED.com by Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing your inner creative genius. She reflects on how she can possibly hope to create anything worthwhile after producing what very well could have been the highlight of her career. Click here to watch.

Inspiration for anyone trying to create anything, anytime. Truly encouraging. OLE!!

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