Monday, July 14, 2008

The Write Stuff?

Unless you live under a large rock, you have most likely realized that I have a mild obsession with writing. Ever since I was able to form letters into words I've been fascinated with composing stories, articles, and unrequested love letters. As an elementary school student, I won several writing competitions and was vice principal for a day because of a "Say No to Drugs" essay I wrote at the age of 12. In 4th grade I won a small tree because of my essay explaining how well I would care for it. The tree ultimately died 3 months later, but my writing was superb.

All of my teachers believed I would someday become a professional writer, but until now blogging has satisfied my itch (and the 20 completely filled journals in my basement). However, I now find myself wanting something more; I want to write a book. No, I don't want to compose the Great American Novel, nor do I need to be as famous as James Patterson. I'd probably settle for a well-written article in Playboy. Most people subscribe for the articles, you know.

This weekend I checked out several books on getting published and have busied myself with reading them while Brad is in Vegas. Today I got all kinds of excited reading about the "how to's" of getting published. But as I read further, I began to get discouraged. The book I'm writing is a sassy, snarky memoir/non-fictional book about wedding planning. A "Bitches Guide" to planning a wedding, if you will. Based loosely (meaning completely) on my wedding experience a year ago, it's funny, kind of dirty and I'd buy it if I saw it on the shelf. Unfortunately, most of these "expert" books explain that in order to get non-fiction published, you must first be an expert in your field (i.e. a published author with credentials coming out your nether regions in spades). I do not fit this mold. To my knowledge, I have only been published once. My story "Anyway" was published in the Kansas Young Authors annual book in 1989. The story was approximately 150 words long. Not exactly a qualified credential.

So, do I send out some query letters and book proposals anyway just to see what happens? I believe I will. The worst that can happen is a rejection letter, right? And besides, if "Everybody Poops" can get published, I'm pretty certain my little book deserves a chance. I wonder what kind of credentials that author had....

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Kim,
If you really want to have a book published, I will call my friend Shana for you in Cali. Her mom and step dad are both writers with published work, who currently write screen plays. Just let me know. Also if you want something done in a small circulation my cousins in Minn. also have some work published. Just give me a call if you want me to talk to them.
Missie Antisdel

Anonymous said...

I don't have any advice but I wish you luck. Your wedding planning book sounds like a good read, as in I would love to read it!

Reach for your goal! Go for it!

Love, Aunt Joy

Anonymous said...

Hey Kim, I say go for it! Publishing is a weird and wacky business, and most of the time it's all in the timing and who you know. If your book is just what some publisher is looking for, he/she won't care that it's your first book. They'd be happy to be the one to "discover" you! And like you said, the worst that could happen is you could get some rejection letters. Just throw them away and keep trying.
Best wishes!
from Brad's cousin Kate in Chicago