Monday, August 31, 2009

Sweet Repeats Contest

A good book is a good book, no matter how many times you read it. It isn’t just words. It’s an experience. During my teaching years, ISLAND OF THE BLUE DOLPHIN always brought me to tears. SPOILER ALERT (If you haven’t read the book, skip to the next paragraph). Scott O’Dell’s story made me feel like I was the girl left on the island. When I read “oh Rontu!” after feeling the last heartbeats of my dog, my heart broke too.

So here’s where this post takes a turn for the happy. I want to know one kids' book you love and have read many times. Tell about it in the comment section. On Friday, September 4, we will put the names in the hat and pick one winner. The winner will receive a $5 gift card to Barnes & Noble to help purchase another book to be read and reread.

Please make sure I have a way to contact you (email address, twitter name, Bat Signal). If I can’t get up with you, I’ll have to pick another winner. Good luck and thanks for sharing.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Responding to Rejections

The other day, a friend of a friend tweeted in response to receiving a submission rejection letter. A few of his followers copied his message, added encouraging words, and sent it back into the twitter universe. Now people who have never met this writer know two things about him.

1. Somebody just rejected his writing.
2. He is sulking about it.

Neither of these occurrences is uncommon for writers. Almost everyone actively pursuing publication collects form rejections. And they sting. You send your “babies” out with high hopes and big dreams. Let yourself mourn, for a minute or two, and then get back to work. But be careful who you invite to your pity party. Do you really want an agent or editor who might be checking out your work with hesitation to see your announcement that others are quickly dismissing it? You can whine, but do it offline and to someone who loves you more than your virtual friends.

Posting your writer rejections on the internet is like drunk dialing after a breakup. It might seem harmless at the time, but when you look at the after effects, it ain’t pretty.

And followers: send your kind thoughts, but don’t spread the word about someone else’s rejection. Respond without repeating it. Otherwise, you are the buddy who watches your friend in his moment of weakness and takes his picture.