Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Roller Coaster Ride of Writing

I don't know about you, but the writing profession is the wildest roller coaster I've ever been on. I live near Six Flags in southern California, so I've ridden some doozies (do people still say doozies?)

Thanks to the generous founders and participants at writeoncon, we soaked up a lot of greatness this past week. The awesome information blew me away. I was up.

Once it was over, I had the strangest reaction: I got the blues. Not the "I'm so sad it's over" blues. They were the "Who am I kidding? There's so much talent out there, how can I compete?" kind of blues. I was down. (I'm already over that, btw. Of course I can compete!)

Then I learned that my article was published in Scholastic Math Magazine's September issue--page 8. I was up.

Whew! Yes, it's a wild ride, but one worth taking. If I have to, I'll even wait in the long line in order to ride in the front seat. I'm strapped in and ready to go.

How about you? How's it going on your roller coaster?

photo credit: flickr

34 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your article! Like you I came away from the conference awed at all the talent out there but not discouraged. The conference was so enlightening I kept thinking: I'm a writer, too! I can do this!

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  2. Those moods hit me sometimes. There IS a lot of talent out there! But I eventually snap out of it. Very few writers strut around with a "look how great I am" attitude. Most of us are just a little insecure in our abilities so in the end my worries and insecurities are what reassure me. How twisted is that?

    Congrats on your article!!! That's FABULOUS!

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  3. Catherine, it truly was a cool thing to be a part of. And the fact that all those pros donated their time is amazing.

    Vicki, it doesn't usually take me too long to snap out of it, either. Sounds like a normal funk is just that: normal!

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  4. oh boy - am i EVER familiar with that roller coaster. there are days when i'm screaming to get off though. i guess those would be my down days. but most of the time, i'm with you. i want in the front seat! better yet, i'll even volunteer to drive!

    congrats on your publication! i'm waiting on mine from bellaonline. any. day.

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  5. Amie, it's so comforting to be on this ride together! I can't wait to read about your piece in bellaonline!

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  6. I know! It's amazing how you can be so up and so down, sometimes with only a span of hours (or even minutes) in between. But I think we keep writing for the same reason we keep riding roller coasters - it's fun, it's thrilling, terrifying, and exciting. But most of all, we love it and as soon as we get off we crave another ride. We just can't stop ourselves!

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  7. What a timely post. Last night I fell into a funk, closed my manuscript and headed to bed feeling really down. However, as I tossed and turned, my character popped into my head and whispered a way out of my plot hole. I immediately jumped out of bed and hit the keyboard. After an hour of writing, I felt great and back in control. Talk about a roller coaster ride!

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  8. Just think how dull all of this would be if the ride was flat. Here's to roller coasters and those moments at the top!

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  9. YEEAAAHHHH! I can't wait to read the article, Julie! You are such a talented writer, and I know that agent phone call is just around the corner for you.

    I completely understand about the roller coaster ride of being a writer. I have 3 fulls out right now, so I'm definitely on a high. The main thing is just preparing yourself menatally for that low. Sure, it sucks to be rejected, but as you well know, it only takes one yes to become a published author. Great post, and hope you have a wonderful weekend! Tory

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  10. Congrats on getting your article published! My thoughts on writing are doing their best to imitate a rubber Super ball. They bounce everywhere and I'm just holding on for the ride. :)

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  11. Congrats on your article Julie! I got so busy with the day job that I couldn't follow WriteOnCon like I wanted. So I'm catching up now reading the posts.

    As for the rollercoster, for most of this year I felt like I'm was tumbling down into a black tunnel. Now I feel like I'm clicking up a very HIGH hill.

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  12. Julie, the article is terrific. I'm planning to use it with my class this fall. You gave just the sort of problems that they need practice with!

    Ahhh the roller coaster. I've been up and down on it multiple times today alone. I was in B&N earlier and saw a book that triggered an idea. But frankly, I felt too tired to even think about writing it. Then, as I was cooking dinner, a first line jumped out at me and I was majorly psyched again. So I went online to look at the book I'd seen, hoping my idea was very different. (All of those comments from WriteonCon about pitches sounding too derivative echoed in my ears.) The synopsis felt too much alike. Down again. So I read a sample chapter. Hmmm, maybe not so much the same. Problem was, by this time I was too tired to even think about exploring it more.

    Isn't it grand to be a writer? ;)

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  13. Oh Julie,
    I'm definitely on that rollercoaster with you! Some days I think, "Who am I kidding. I can't do this." And other days I'm on top of the world! Wish I could have participated in writeoncon! I saw lots of tweets about it and was so jealous that I couldn't jump over and participate more!

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  14. Congrats on the article! Yay!

    I totally relate to the roller coaster--It was great to know how many writers are out there, and also a bit disconcerting knowing how much talent is there as well!

    It's an awesome thing! And we get to meet some fabulous people through the blogosphere!

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  15. Congratulations on the article, Julie.
    My particular roller coaster just got wild this week as a virus took our pc down on Monday. We're hoping to get it cleaned up, but in the meantime I just bought myself a laptop. Thankfully, I'm climbing back into the game, hopefully fully immersed by tomorrow night.
    I didn't know we were relative neighbors! We live in the central valley and drive by Magic Mountain a couple of times a year on our way to a Dodger game or Disneyland. Who knew?
    Take care.

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  16. Julie, You're truly amazing. Love the pieces on not always working for the money, courage, and the rollercoaster. Careers are based on those things.

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  17. Wonderful news about your article! What a wonderful boost. As far as my RC ride, I try not to get on. Most of my energy is spent staying focused.

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  18. Sorry I missed Writeoncon - just got back from a trip August 10th and didn't know it was on. I think we all share the roller coaster feeling. Writing is such an introspective pursuit, it's easy to get disheartened occasionally. My focus now is to get back into my WIP after being away for 3 weeks. Congratulations on your magazine article!

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  19. Fantastic, Julie - congrats on your article! How exciting! :-)

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  20. Congrats on your article! Yes it is such a roller coaster experience. Some days I want to pack it in and think this is awful and then something good happens and it keeps me going!

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  21. Thanks for sharing your roller coaster experiences. What a ride we're on, but at least we're strapped in together!

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  22. Hi Julie..I wish I could have participated in Writecon. But next year I will surely take part.
    Some days I really have the blues, while on other days I am floating on a soft cloud.
    Congrats on your article.

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  23. Congrats! That's amazing Julie!

    And I felt exactly the same way after Writeoncon. It was a bit discouraging to see all the wonderfully talented people out there that are so close to landing their dream while I still feel so far away! And yet it was so amazingly helpful that I was happy to soak up everyone's knowledge. Isn't writing fun!?!?

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  24. LOL Julie...you know I agree with you!

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  25. Rachna, the nice thing is you can still go to the web site and read all the posts! And yes, it sounds like they'll do it again next year, which is awesome.

    Jamie, these crazy games we play with ourselves is CRAZY fun and CRAZY scary.

    Lindsay, I know you do!

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  26. Julie that's amazing!! Congratulations!!

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  27. Sorry Julie, you are no longer allowed to feel blue. You've officially passed that point. Just kidding. I know even published authors get those insecure feelings sometimes and that's okay. It's how we handle it that matters, right?

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  28. Melissa, thanks!

    Lisa, so true. The trick is snapping out of it STAT!

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  29. Most important--you're enjoying the ride! Buckle up and go full speed

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  30. Hooray that you're article was published - that's definitely a big, big up!

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