Blog Schedule

I post on Monday with an occasional random blog thrown in for good measure. I do my best to answer all comments via email and visit around on the days I post.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Random Thought Thursday

Today's quote is from F. Scott Fitzgerald. Full name, Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald. He was named after a second cousin, who happened to write the words to our National Anthem. Hmmmm, a portent of things to come?

He wrote only four novels the fifth was never finished. Other than some short stories, essays and a play, that's all he wrote. He died at the age of 44, believing he was a failure.
And yet he wrote this:

Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.

In the midst of his own self-doubt he passed on a pearl of wisdom.

We, as writers, know about defeat. We receive them regularly, they are called rejections. We are strange animals. We seem to long for recognition yet go about getting it in one of the most difficult ways there is.

It seems easier to get recognition by being a mass murderer, or by running naked across a stage at a concert, or doing something really stupid that gets you a Darwin Award.

But noooooooo, we sit in our little rooms in front of our little computers all day and write and send out queries believing SOME day SOME one will come along and say, "WOW! You're it for me sweetheart. I'm gonna get you published."

We have to either be masochists or nuts or stupid or driven. Whatever we are, we also have to be very, very strong.

So what are you? I'm a bit nuts myself, with a whole lot of strong.


  1. Bish, what an interesting post! I learnt a whole lot about F Scott Fitzgerald that I never knew before.

    I prefer the word "driven" to nuts. Writers are driven to write, because why else would we keep on writing when there is so little external reward?

  2. Brilliant post!

    I think I might be a combination of the above.


  3. Interesting. If I must be a nut, I'd like to be a cashew....mmm, yum.

    You're invited to a Halloween party. See details on my site.
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

  4. I'm a driven nut perhaps? A brazilian I think. LOL.

    I think its sad that great authors die young and especially if they die thinking they're a failure.

    Definitely agree we have to strong and thick skinned with our writing, its a journey and my goal is to get published and write full time. So yes, I keep that in mind when I'm up at all crazy hours or snatching time during the day to write. ;)

  5. What a fascinating man ... and a great quote. I'm definitely a nut, like an acorn I suppose. I'll grow strong like a big old oak tree.

  6. Nuts happen to be highly nutritious. They feed wildlife and people, and when not eaten sprout into beautiful and useful trees.

    There's lots of ways to write without going through the agony of the marketplace. What if everybody who took up sewing assumed that their goal was to get their clothing designs into stores? What if everybody assumed that loving to cook was the equivalent of wanting to be a chef?

    Writing for publication is not something anyone should do who doesn't want it more than anything else. But if that - or designing clothes for the marketplace, or being a chef - is what you want more than anything else, you can't afford to let anybody discourage you from trying for it. Even if you never get what you want, or the ultimate goal keeps receding, you'll be happier working toward it than you will mucking about doing stuff you don't care about.

  7. I think I'm a walnut Vijaya. Wrinkly with wisdom. :O

    Oh, I like you're thoughts on the matter Peni!

  8. Oh, I love that quote. That's so true! Thanks, Bish.

  9. Funny story: When I added "writing" to my Facebook hobbies, I started seeing ads about depression meds in the sidebar :D I'm a pecan myself.

  10. I don't know -- what comes to mind is a button I saw on a friend's coat when we were teenagers: "I was born this way -- what's your excuse?"

  11. I never knew that Fitzgerald and Key were related. Crazy that two iconic Americans came from the same family.

    I think all writers have to have a touch of crazy. Otherwise we could never do what we do. And maybe it's not so much the writing a novel and submitting it, but the fact that we keep doing it over and over and over again.

  12. Re: F. Scott Fitzgerald, whom I read voraciously when I was a teenager. I would be happy, I think, just to have written The Great Gatsby. One of the most perfect novels ever written. It's a classic, I think. I love it. So sad that he felt like a failure.


Your Random Thoughts are most welcome!