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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Hardest Thing You'll Ever Do

Getting published may be the hardest thing you'll ever do. Writing is hard. Getting published is harder.

Take these great writers:


1. Martin Luther: Posting the 95 Theses on the castle church gate in Wittenberg, Germany had to be tough decision for Luther. The guy started the Protestant Reformation and was excommunicated for his criticisms of the Catholic Church. Yowza.


2. Harriet Beecher Stowe: When Abraham Lincoln met the author of Uncle Tom's Cabin, he commented, "So you're the little woman who wrote the book that made this great war." Her written depiction of slavery incensed the South and angered the North. Big time.




3. Thomas Paine: The former corset maker originally hailed from England, but wrote a pamphlet supporting the American independence movement before the Continental Congress penned the Declaration of Independence. He claimed it was Common Sense that an island could not rule a continent. Americans listened and began clamoring for independence. Treason, anyone?


These people surely poured blood, sweat, and tears into their manuscripts, just as all of us have. But what they wrote was considered outrageous, words that were dangerous to put on paper. All we have to worry about is finding an agent and an editor who love our work.

Easy peasy, right?


18 comments:

Amalia T. said...

That is certainly some perspective. :)

Also, kind of fitting that a corset maker had the last name of Paine.

Stephanie Thornton said...

Amalia- I've always gotten a kick out of that myself. My 14 year old students don't quite appreciate it as much as I do.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Those are some powerful examples to be sure. Thanks for the reminder.

By the way, you probably know this already but I'll pass it along just in case. There is an exhibit opening in Philadelphia called Cleopatra The Search for the Last Queen of Egypt, and there is a great slide show on National Geographic site
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/events/cleopatra/underwater-world/

Stephanie Thornton said...

Tricia- I didn't know about that exhibit, but I'm on my way to check out the slide show. Thanks for the link- that's totally awesome! (Although Hatshepsut is waaaaaay better than Cleopatra! :) )

Rayna M. Iyer said...

Thank you for putting things in perspective!
And have I told you my six year old is obsessed with all things Ancient Egypt already?

Piedmont Writer said...

It does take a lot of guts, blood, sweat and tears. But that is the thread that holds us all together. We know what things will happen when we get published. We have to support each other in our own way.

Jemi Fraser said...

Easy peasy for sure :)

KarenG said...

It's good to be reminded of those who did hard things and made amazing sacrifices.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Oh, Stephanie, if only...if only... :-)

Cort Ellyn said...

Your spin on things is so much fun! :D Yeah, I knew I had chosen one difficult vocation when I heard that the only industry harder to break into is the music industry. Does that mean I should've gone to Hollywood instead and auditioned for a blockbuster film? My chances of success appear to have been higher. Bummer.

Kathi Oram Peterson said...

I can hardly imagine the courage it took for them to put pen to paper and write. Thanks for the reminder.

L. T. Host said...

I, uh, suddenly feel very inadequate as a writer. Wow.

I never knew about UNCLE TOM'S CABIN and the Civil War before!

Bane of Anubis said...

Ah, the good ole days when writing got you killed/scorned ;)

noce said...

Great examples, I love how you were able to so succinctly put so much history and writing into perspective like that:)

Judith Mercado said...

I just received a rejection from an agent I really wanted so this post hit home for me. I'll probably go through a swoon for a while. Then I'll pick myself up again and keep trying.

SAMUEL PARK said...

Great post. Love the pictures, too. I like how you make us think about the historical implications of people's work. It is indeed amazing what Beecher Stowe did with her novel. Very inspiring. Thanks for posting this.

Nishant said...

Those are some powerful examples to be sure. Thanks for the reminder.

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