Living with a children's author isn't as easy as it looks!

Posts tagged ‘rejection’

Best Doctor Ever

photo 1

Today is Dr. Seuss’s birthday. He would’ve been 109 years old. He is the Best Doctor Ever on account of no needles, no looking into ears with a flashlight, no sticks stuck into forbidden places, and no touching of my bits and pieces.

Waiting for the doctor...

Waiting for the Doctor. Hoping for the Best.

Mom also loves Dr. Seuss for a million other reasons – his wild imagination, his silly rhyming, his crazy stories, and the fact that his first book was rejected 27 times before anybody said they liked it. Misery loves company.

rejected

Mom’s #1 favorite Dr. Seuss book is The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins from 1938.

500 hats

Normally, Mom and I steer clear of anything that smacks of numbers, but counting those hats is so much fun and so suspenseful that we can’t resist it. Also, a hundred years ago, Mom’s 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Nelson read that story to her class and Mom and her friends giggled and counted and were afraid for poor little Bartholomew not being able to take his hat off for the king.

500 hats2

As of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, Mom is up to date on her 12×12 Challenge. She has written 2 new stories in the past 2 months. Now it’s a new month and time to start a new story.

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In which direction should she go?

Direction? Up, of course.

King of the Hill of Filth

King of the Hill of Filth

What will be original?

Original? It doesn’t get any more original than an old dog learning a new trick.

333

Who will step out of her list of character ideas?

Character? This one.

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Or this one.

4

Or this one.

devil

How will she make the story sparkle?

Sparkle? With a tiara, of course.

Am I sparkling, yet?

Am I sparkling, yet?

GeoDog

Mom and I went geocaching again last week. Geocaching is like treasure hunting. Mom holds the phone that shows the GPS and compass. Then we walk and walk and walk and walk.

walking

Then she decides the phone is upside down, so she turns it around and we start over. We walk and walk and walk and walk some more – the other way.

walking 2

The phone tells her when we’re getting close, and then we start searching and scanning till we find the treasure.

in a tree

Sometimes, Mom says, “No acorns.”

acorns

and “Don’t eat the pine cone.”

pine cone

and “Yikes! Hornets!”

nest

Geocaching is fun!

geo green

Mom does treasure hunting when she wants to submit a story, too. She has too many stories to count inside her computer and some more inside her head (that’s what’s up in there…). She is sure that one of them is a treasure and will be Book #2. Whenever she reads about a publisher or an agent that seems to be looking for the type of story Mom writes, she starts treasure hunting. She opens up story after story, revises them a little, talks to herself about them, and decides whether she’s headed in the right direction, or needs to turn around and start over.

map

Macaroni

Mom says, “No garbage.” a lot. I’m not allowed to lick the floor or eat from the garbage pail (I can barely reach it, anyway).

garbage

When we walk around the neighborhood or go to the park, I’m not allowed to eat banana peels or sunflower seed shells or pick up empty pudding cups or coffee lids. I’m not allowed to have candy wrappers or eat goose poop or sniff around by the dumpster.

lid

Apparently, garbage is a bad thing. Sometimes, Mom writes a word or a sentence or a story that’s garbage. She doesn’t mince words about it. She says, “This stinks!” and “What am I talking about?” and “Are you eating a napkin?”

napkin

Mom is not worried when she writes garbage. She thinks if she “gets the garbage out” the good stuff will come next.

garbage2

Let’s get the garbage out!

I know this is true because after Mom and I took the garbage out once, we walked around the back of the dumpster, and I found the good stuff! Macaroni noodles!!

macaroni2

Before Mom could say the word, “Leave it,” I ate one!

macaroni

Garbage. Mmmmm…

Honors

I have been honored again! I’m sure I don’t deserve it, but I LIKE it! My friends at Praying for One Day nominated me for the Shine On award. I think it’s because my fur is so shiny.

shineon

And my friends at Collies of the Meadow nominated me for the Super Sweet Blogging Award. I think it’s because I’m sweet.

super-sweet-award11

Thanks, guys! If any of my bloggy friends would like to share these awards, feel free!

I have also been honored to be the Fur Friend of the Month at My Three Moggies. What an honor to actually be featured after reading the stories of other fascinating Fur Friends there. The moggies told my story and also showed my cuteness in pictures. Wow!

huh

Mom has been honored, too. She has received letters from an agent, a couple of magazines, and a picture book publishing company. All rejections. Yay. That’s a good thing…. Right….?

shredder

At any rate, Mom has finally decided she hates the mailman. I been trying and trying to tell her he was evil….

sad window

Gotcha

Today is 12/12. Such a happy day. It’s my Gotcha Day! That’s the day three years ago that Mom picked me out and adopted me and said, “I gotcha. You’re coming home with me!”

couch day 1

I was in a cage, with overgrown nails, bad breath, scabs on my ears, and parasites in my tummy. I was smaller than she wanted and older than she hoped I’d be. But even though I seemed all wrong, Mom saw something in me that would turn out to be just right.

blanket baby

That’s how it works sometimes in life…. And in writing. Mom wrote a nonfiction story for the first time in a long time. It troubled her because she didn’t love it as much as she usually loves her stories. It just didn’t sound the way she had hoped.

confused

She brought it to her writing group named DavidLaurieandOtherDavid. They said her story had overgrown nails, bad breath, scabs on its ears, and parasites in its tummy. …not really, but they made a LOT of suggestions so Mom is practically starting over with it. She’s hoping that even if it seems all wrong , it’ll turn out to be just right.

I think the story will be fine and maybe even amazing when Mom works with it for a while. I mean, look how I turned out!

dress blanket

 

 

Countdown Wednesday

It’s October.  Today we’re counting down about Halloween.

Things I Love About Halloween.

3. Costumes.  This year I’m dressing as a nurse. We waited a long time for my costume to come in the mail.  We’re also waiting a long time for an acceptance letter in the mail, but that’s a whole different story. 

2. Candy.  I’m not allowed to eat candy, but if I get lucky, I’ll get to eat a wrapper or two (or 6). And maybe Mom will let me lick a lollipop for a while. Those things are yummy. Even the stick is delicious!

 1. Trick or Treaters.  I love when kids come to trick or treat at my house. I know they kind of want candy, but I also think they’re mostly coming to see ME!

 Things Mom Hates About Halloween.

3. Costumes.  When Mom was a teacher, she learned that kids in costumes were WAAAY more difficult to handle than kids in regular clothes. She learned a lot from the kids, and got a lot of ideas from them, but along the way, they taught her how to HATE Halloween. A lot.

2. Candy. Mom buys tons of candy, but we don’t have tons of trick or treaters. That means she has to eat a lot of the candyherself. I can’t remember why this is a bad thing, but apparently, it is… 

1. Stories.  Mom doesn’t hate Halloween stories. She actually wrote a couple of them. But they’re sitting in her computer going nowhere. And she hates that! Now that Halloween is on its way, Mom is in the mood to dust off those stories and get back to work on them. They need to be cut, edited, critiqued, cut, and edited. …And critiqued. Then they’ll be ready to hit the road and knock on a few doors, like a couple of little trick or treaters.

42. There is one October HAPPY thing that Mom LOVES.  Her story Fly Fishing is published in the last ever issue of Stories for Children e-Magazine.  Click the link to get your very own e-copy!

Hope and Things Like That

Sometimes Mom gets rejections.  She got TWO of them the other day.  TWO. At once.  I’m not much with numbers, but I think two means a LOT!  Now she hates the mailman, just like I do.  She said, “This mailman has it in for me.” And I said, “Told-ja.”

But after she marked the rejections in her book and shredded them (so they don’t bring bad Karma), Mom went right back to having hope.  Hope that she’ll finish her next story for 12×12, hope that her writing group (named DavidLaurieandOtherDavid) will give her some good ideas for her last story, hope for Book #2, and hope that I will learn to fetch a ball one of these days.

Our Collie friends and Chuck passed us the Hope badge in the Hope Relay.  Mom says, “That’s a good sign.” and “Hope is a good thing.” and “Bring it here! Bring it here! Bring it here! RATS!”

I have hope, too.  Hope that I can have a frozen ice cream treat today,

hope that we can go to the park later,

and hope that she’ll forget about this fetching stuff and let me keep my baseball in my toy collection on the couch.

My friend, Misaki, has been thinking about me lately.  How do I know? She sent me this!

Thanks, Misaki!

I’ve been thinking about my friends at Hamster Diaries.  They’ve had a rough time lately, and now that they’re bouncing back, I want to pass the Hope Relay to them, and share the Thinking Of You Award, as well.

I’d also like to pass the Hope Relay and Thinking Of You Award to Bassa and Barnaby at Bassas Blog and their Tall Person at Georgia About.

While we’re at it, I entered a fun contest at Mollie and Alfie’s Blog.  Even though we didn’t win, we got this cool badge, anyway.  Cute Huh?  Thanks Mollie and Alfie!

All I had to do to earn it was look like this for a few minutes…..

Even-Steven

Things always work out even-steven for me.  If I lose a ball, I find another one on the field.  If I accidentally eat the wing off my stuffed chicken, Mom buys me a stuffed goose. 

Sometimes I fall off the chair.  Other times I fall off the couch.  Sometimes, I’m naughty, and sometimes I’m super-cuddly.  Even-steven.

Mom was even-steven yesterday.  Early in the morning, she got an acceptance for her story Too Many Pets from Stories for Children Online Magazine.  She printed it out, hung it up  on her bulletin board, and said, “Yay!” and “Yay!” and “No, you may NOT eat the thumb tacks.” 

Then the mailman brought her an envelope from Highlights Magazine.  Mom said, “I bet this is another acceptance!” and “We’re on a roll!” and “Yay!”  Then she opened it (insert dramatic music here).  I was hoping she would take out the box of thumb tacks (which I’m DYING to taste), to hang it up next to the other one, but nope.  No hanging, no tacks, …no yay.

Mom said, “Bummer.” and “Rejection.” and “At least she personalized it with a little note.”

Sometimes, even-steven stinks!  But not for me! Later I plan on being super-cuddly….

Inspirational Quote of the Week

There is no such thing as failure. There are only results.

Tony Robbins

Mom and I do not even believe in failure. We can’t. It would make things too difficult. When I try to learn new things like fetching (yes, I consider that “new” even though I’ve been trying to learn it for two years), Mom never says, “Forget it.” or “This is an epic fail.” She always says, “Try it again.” and “Almost.” and “Not the couch! Not the couch!! NOT THE COUCH!!! Ugh!”

Apparently, bringing the ball on the couch is not fetching, which is unfortunate because I’m really good at that.  I’ve been practicing that for two years. 

When Mom gets rejections, she does not think that is failure, either. She says, “It’s the nature of the beast.”  (*shiver* I don’t like beasts at all.)  Mom knows that authors get rejections, so she takes them in stride.

It’s not her favorite result, but it’s just a result and not the end of the world. 12x12in’12 helps Mom to keep on keeping on, so she writes more stories and different stories and doesn’t waste time being sad about rejections because writing is not sad.  It’s fun.

Fetching, on the other hand – NOT fun.

Take-My-Picture-Tuesday

As you know, I’ve been haunted and harangued by the mechanical hamster, which I’m pretty sure has been trying to kill me.  Well…

Look who killed the mechanical hamster.  I guess I showed him.  Now I can move on with my life.

Mom is moving on with her life, too.  She looked at the rejected Highlights Fiction Contest story and did a little work on it first thing this morning.  She will stare at her computer and talk to herself a lot about it.  Soon it will be back in the mail heading someplace fun, and maybe will be Book #2.

Mom said, “I’m having a conflict with the conflict in this story.” and “I hate conflict.” and “I’m going to put in a fresh battery and put this thing back together.”

Uh-oh.

This week, Mom will work on two stories at the same time.  Her Highlights reject and her new story for 12×12.  Both need conflict, both need a stronger story arc, and one of them needs an ending!

Mom has her work cut out for her.  So do I.  I plan to get the battery out of the mailman, next. I’m pretty sure he’s trying to kill me.

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