I love this post!!
Can I ask how you managed to get to where you are? With regards to getting your writing out there, and being invited to readings and stuff like that?
Okay Austa and everybody else, I have a confession to make.
I have no idea how the being invited to stuff even happened.
Basically, an author I friended on facebook said she liked me and invited me down to Portland to read at her gig Unchaste Readers and I read and okay.
Another confession. I almost shat myself, I hugged strangers too hard and was blown away that people I have never met in my life liked my story. I was a little drunk because I was nervous as fuck. People said I sounded like a TV actress, someone asked where my books were and then I hugged my friends who came to see me read, I touched Milcah’s butt and then my partner and I went back to our little hotel room and watched a fuckload of cable TV then we went out for Thai food and I got to eat the most delicious crickets.
As for getting my writing out there, I have on huge secret are you ready Austa?
- Write like a mother fucker.
- Get rejected.
- Submit again.
- Get accepted sometimes.
And there you have my secret.
Basically, a few years ago I started doing a few things differently. Instead of writing what I thought would get published I started writing basically whatever the fuck I want to. Sometimes nobody wants to publish my things and that’s okay. What’s important to me is the work. I also started looking at writing as my work. This is what I do. It is what I am supposed to be doing.
The fact that I work a job that stresses my shit out is secondary. It keeps my partner and I housed, in meds and socks and food. Sometimes if we do stuff right we can do something nice.
But this, this here these stories, the poems, the essays that make me vomit before sending them along is what I am supposed to be doing. Everything else is bullshit and necessity.
And invest in yourself. If you have a cache of stuff, save up the 50$ or spend 5$ for a month and get a Duotrope subscription and submit. Or set aside two weeks to read every lit mag you can find on the internet and work up a list of where you want to submit.
Sometimes you’re going to feel weird or uncomfortable. Some of the rejections will feel like someone turned you down for a date and it’s okay. Just keep going.
This shit is hard as hell but to me it is worth it.
If you feel like you need workshopping or support you have the internet and the vast numbers of spots you can find to do that if you need it.
Get pumped up.
I personally have this need to get mean. I hunker down and bare my teeth, grow;, grumble and shove myself at doing what I feel like I need to do. I have this uh, war like mentality and everybody is on my shitlist. Not in a personal way but in a get the fuck out of my way I have to shit to say and do. It works for me. While I am getting mean and shit, I aso let myself do what I need to do.
Sometimes I write stuff because I have hurt feelings, because I’m angry, because I want to cry and I hate to cry so I write.
Basically what’s gotten me here right now is having support (my bestie and partner and other friends), figuring out how I work and working, and working and making myself submit even when I’m scared.
And now here we are.
Was that even a good answer? I’m not sure. I hope so?