Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Be Your Hero

If you're looking for my A to Z post for today (letter H!), please scroll down or click here.

I'm excited to have Amy White on the blog today for a wonderful guest post. She's an assistant for the WIFYR conference this summer where I'll be teaching! Take it away, Amy...

Be Your Hero

Hello Ilima blog readers, Amy White here; avid follower, and with Ilima’s gracious permission, a guest for today’s post.

 As an assistant for the upcoming Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers conference, June 16-20, I can’t tell you how excited I am to be following Ilima’s success in the publishing world, even more, to hear from her directly at the conference.

Speaking of which, I have a question, are you a writer?

Do you ever feel like the road to publication is a lot like climbing a mountain?

A Plot Mountain maybe?

That uphill climb wherein writers subject their character to trials, tribulations and all manner of vexing experiences; the one where the character is made a better, stronger, and ultimately a climactic-worthy hero.

Look at your all-too-real-for-your-personal-tastes Plot Mountain to Authordom, the one that at the moment looms like Mount Everest. Can you pinpoint where you are in your journey? Are you stuck?

I’ve heard that authors are to strand their character in a tree and then throw rocks at them. Make achieving what they want difficult, if not impossible. Make them work for that end goal.

Ever wonder if you are the one in the tree?

Maybe you have a finished manuscript; you've even sent it out. Did find yourself questioning what on earth possessed you to send your baby out into the world only to have rocks (in the form of rejection letters) thrown at it—at you?

Or is it the journey to the finished manuscript that has you cursing the day you decided to write, the rocks coming at you in the form of not enough time, or feelings of inadequacy.

How do you get the courage to not only get yourself out of that tree, but face down those nay-saying rock throwers? How do you push through to become the hero of your own story?

I can’t say that I have the answer. Yet.

But I know where to find answers. It’s from the published authors that have made it through. It’s learning from those that have gone before. It’s from Ilima and the champions of the author world who are willing to teach. You just have to show up and listen.

Another thing I know, by the time a writer has mastered their personal mountain, passed through the darkest dark nights of the soul where thoughts of giving up were all too attractive,  those writers—ahem, authors –they have every right to be called heroes.

Be your hero.

Aww...thanks, Amy. Great post. Anyone else coming to WIFYR this year? Be sure to let me know and stop by to say hi!


Weaver said...

Love Amy. She totally rocks and is so supportive. And such a busy girl. :)

Michelle D. Argyle said...

Great post! It really is like a mountain! I read this from a different perspective, though, because lately I've been struggling like crazy with another mountain *after* publication. It just never ends! But this post gives me hope because it really is all about the attitude of never giving up.

Michelle D. Argyle said...
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David P. King said...

Sweet, you're teaching there? Wish I could go!

Enjoyed the encouraging post. If it's not a mountain, it's no challenge. What's the fun in that? :)

Robin said...

Comparing this writing thing to mountain climbing... perfect!


One thing I didn't mention are the friends that also help -- the ones that stand by you day after day;
encouraging, pushing, and just being there. I don't know that I could keep going without all my amazing friends.

Rachel Schieffelbein said...

Great post! Hearing about other writer's success is always encouraging, I think. It can happen! :)

Carrie Butler said...

Wonderful post! :)

Cathy Olliffe-Webster said...

You're right, Amy, sigh... if I ever figure it out, I'll let you know.

Kathryn Purdie said...

Fantastic post. And how I <3 WIFYR.

Leigh Covington said...

Um, those creatures are cute... but might give me nightmares too. I know that makes no sense, and yet - it does :)

And love your post! You're amazing woman!


Oh Cathy, please please do--anyone that figures it out, I'm all for share and share alike.
Sorry, Leigh about the creatures -- they are Tarsier Monkeys. I think I totally related to the terrified one, along with the little guy tucking his head behind the tree. At least he's supporting his friend :)
And big huge thanks to Ilima for being willing to share here tips this June at wifyr, as well as her sharing her blogspace!

Nicole said...

Good advice!