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View Full Version : I received my 2,128th rejection letter yesterday.



Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 10:42 AM
*

My-Immortal
12-14-2005, 10:48 AM
What answer should we give you? If you're as calloused as you claim (which may be the case), nothing we say, positive or negative will (or should?) have any effect on you. Right?

Rejection (of any kind) sucks.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 11:19 AM
You don't have to answer at all. It's 2:00 in the morning and I'm just tossing stuff out to get it the heck out of my brain.

By the by, what is your job? To follow me around and shake your finger at me and make me feel like even more of a loser than I all ready do, if that's possible? Because that's pretty much the only thing you ever seem to say to me. Well, thanks for the tough love-hard advice approach, or whatever it is you think you're doing, but I have about one hundred very real, bi-polar-conjured voices in my head to tell me I'm worthless.

I don't need any additions from the peanut gallery.

My-Immortal
12-14-2005, 11:26 AM
You don't have to answer at all. It's 2:00 in the morning and I'm just tossing stuff out to get it the heck out of my brain.

By the by, what is your job? To follow me around and shake your finger at me and make me feel like even more of a loser than I all ready do, if that's possible? Because that's pretty much the only thing you ever seem to say to me. Well, thanks for the tough love-hard advice approach, or whatever it is you think you're doing, but I have about one hundred very real, bi-polar-conjured voices in my head to tell me I'm worthless.

I don't need any additions from the peanut gallery.

You asked a question - which is why I offered an answer.

I wasn't shaking my finger at you at all. I was taking what you said at face value and wondering what COULD make you feel better IF you were as calloused as you said. You must have read my post with the wrong tone completely. I never said you were a loser - I said rejection sucks. All I got in 2005 was rejections too. They suck. I never said you were worthless either so please stop reading in extra material in my posts.

If you "don't need any additions from the peanut gallery" then don't come onto a board and ASK questions. People might actually take the time to answer you.

Take care

Edit: If you're going to erase your initial post... <shrugs> .....others know what I was responding to. Oh wells.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 11:46 AM
Do you ever wonder why I always react the exact same way to your posts, and Optimus', and William Haskin's?

Not everyone else, but to you guys?

Do you think there might be a little something that you three keep doing to set me off?

And knowing that you keep setting me off, why do you persist?

Do you know what bear baiting is?

No? Look it up. Then stop a little moment and think about it.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 11:55 AM
Bear baiting: A barbaric, medieval form of entertainment, whereupon a bear has his teeth smashed out with a hammer, his claws rent from his paws with pliers, then is chained in a pit and set upon by a pack of slavering dogs, while a mob stands around overhead and spits on the poor creature and laughs and makes wagers.

My-Immortal
12-14-2005, 11:58 AM
Bear baiting: A barbaric, medieval form of entertainment, whereupon a bear has his teeth smashed out with a hammer, his claws rent from his paws with pliers, then is chained in a pit and set upon by a pack of slavering dogs, while a mob stands around overhead and spits on the poor creature and laughs and makes wagers.

And by me answering your initial question I somehow baited you? You are definitely reading WAY too much into what I was posting. I'm flattered in a way that you want to compare me to those other posters (they do have some dry wit), but I was in no way trying to bait you. Perhaps you should try to calmly reread what I posted and realize I was in no way "slamming" you...okay?

Nicholas S.H.J.M Woodhouse
12-14-2005, 11:58 AM
i don't know if you have Arthur the cat in the US, but over here he was a cat used to advertise a brand of cat food and they took his teeth out to help him learn how to eat with his paw, which was the gimmick of their product.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 12:11 PM
i don't know if you have Arthur the cat in the US, but over here he was a cat used to advertise a brand of cat food and they took his teeth out to help him learn how to eat with his paw, which was the gimmick of their product.

I like you. You're very good at diverting wrath. Let's be friends (or feel my wrath). Just kidding (Or am I?) Not. (Am) Not (Am). Not (Am). Not (Am). Not (Am)...

It's not unlike watching a very stupid dog chasing it's own non-existent tail.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 12:14 PM
And by me answering your initial question I somehow baited you? You are definitely reading WAY too much into what I was posting. I'm flattered in a way that you want to compare me to those other posters (they do have some dry wit), but I was in no way trying to bait you. Perhaps you should try to calmly reread what I posted and realize I was in no way "slamming" you...okay?

Termites are devouring my brain (at least, that's what it feels like at the moment). They've been at it for two and a half weeks straight.

I won't be able to get medication for another two months.

You be calm.

Optimus
12-14-2005, 01:01 PM
Aw...poooooor Jack.

*yawn*

Mike Coombes
12-14-2005, 03:51 PM
2000+ rejections...

ever had anything accepted?

Master Bedroom
12-14-2005, 04:06 PM
Would really love to see the first post, not fair deleting it.

Hey, we have to give you an A for effort, I would have given up long before you.

Man, I have had only 4 Rejections and I felt like giving up, What keeps you going?

I still need to work on my stuff, give us all a look and see what we can do to help.

I have already been given some great advice, here on improving the first chapter of my Novella. That’s the beauty of word processors, writing can be fixed, bettered improved.


I know of a good way to sell your book, put a picture of a naked woman on the front cover, and picture of naked women, say, every ten pages. It might not have anything to do with the story but It will sell like hot cakes, maybe even hit the best seller list. If all else fails, I might even have to try that.


Edit: Added that last piece of wonderfull advice.

Sheryl Nantus
12-14-2005, 06:17 PM
welcome to the wonderful world of writing.

might be a good time to re-evaluate your writing, your query letters and the markets you're sending them out to. Maybe you should be approaching different markets, etc. Or taking courses. Or something different.

triceretops
12-14-2005, 06:33 PM
Lantern, how long did it take you to accumulate this mass? It is surely a stupendous amount of "nos." Are these short stories, articles, and novels?
Just curious. And what kind of rejections are they? Form, written..etc.

Tri

Jamesaritchie
12-14-2005, 07:34 PM
*

Look at the bright side. You're now a bit past halfway to William Saroyan's record, and he turned out pretty well.

My-Immortal
12-14-2005, 08:27 PM
Would really love to see the first post, not fair deleting it.


He basically stated he got another rejection letter and that after 10-11 years and over 2100 rejections he'd found he was so calloused by it all that he really didn't feel anything about getting the most recent one...and then he asked, is this good?

I answered in my first post:

"What answer should we give you? If you're as calloused as you claim (which may be the case), nothing we say, positive or negative will (or should?) have any effect on you. Right?

Rejection (of any kind) sucks."

My point was - if indeed he was so calloused already that a rejection letter had no effect on him, how could any answer any of us offer "Yes" or "No" be of any real help to him?

If we said, yes, it is good that you're calloused it basically means we think he's an unfeeling person that doesn't care that his art is being rejected everywhere...

If we said, no, it is NOT good that you're calloused it basically means we think he's become an unfeeling person and that is wrong - and that every new rejection letter should hurt just as much as the first....

I didn't see how either answer would have truly helped him, which is why I asked HIM which one we should offer?

And then, as you can see above - I got my head bitten off for trying to help.

Thanks...

Take care all -

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 10:30 PM
Aw...poooooor Jack.

*yawn*

Hi, Opti.

I think I lover you. Let's get married!

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 10:35 PM
Lantern, how long did it take you to accumulate this mass? It is surely a stupendous amount of "nos." Are these short stories, articles, and novels?
Just curious. And what kind of rejections are they? Form, written..etc.

Tri

The full stats:

$4,500 on postage, print outs and stamps.

Time invested: 11 years.

Types of things written: Any possible type of writing you could possibly conceive: 12 novels, 7 screenplays, 150 essays, 500 poems, 300 short stories, 450 newspaper articles, and the rest is miscellaneous or agent stuff or re-runs.

2,128 places hit up.

Number of publications: The big, fat goose egg.

And yet, people keep telling me I have talent, possibly, after a fashion, maybe, so I soldier on.

Sassenach
12-14-2005, 10:47 PM
If you've written 450 newspaper articles and haven't sold a single one, then, with all due respect, you need to study the form.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 11:01 PM
If you've written 450 newspaper articles and haven't sold a single one, then, with all due respect, you need to study the form.

No, I don't. I'm a highly-experienced journalist and I'll send you clips if you want to see any. Unfortunately, the New York Times has impossible standards.

Aw, what the heck. Below is the last feature I wrote for the Buffalo State College Record:

A boy and his whistling machine

BY Joshua Le Suer

Let us take a mental tour of the fresh installation at the Burchfield-Penney Art Center: "Beyond/In Western New York 2005."

First stop: Gallery One.

Meg Knowles's Wet Spot": While craw-, shark- and goldfish dreamfully paddle about, a projected hand swishes about in the background at hyperspeed.

Joe Miller's "Offering": An oil-on-paint of two Wonderland Alices clutching hands and staring up at what Burchfield-Penney preparator Tom Holt calls, "this greenish, sort-of-sci-fi, uncomfortable, very-eerie-looking sky."

Alfonso Volo's "The Worm Stitch Extension" and "The Plush Mouse's Furry Jockstrap Rhizome": Crocheted yarn is suspended from the ceiling and adorned with holographic glitter, as well as corsage pins and needles.

But just as you turn to venture further into Gallery Two, you hear it: "Tweedle-tweet-wuh-woo-vee-vee-twiddle-twit."

You turn and see nothing but a pair of black speakers on top of a white cabinet.

Again, you hear the strange whistling sound, a sound so very human, without a hint of synthesization. Tentatively, you whistle back. The speakers match you, trill for trill. You whistle the first few bars of "Three Blind Mice." The speakers mimic you perfectly, then suddenly dogleg into Beethoven's "5th" with German undertones.

You've just made the acquaintance of Marc Bohlen's remarkable "Two Whistling Machines," a work of technological art consisting of computers, polyethylene, electronics and silk, according to the placard.

Holt has become somewhat attached to Bohlen's whistling machines.

"I actually feel bad turning it off at the end of the day," Holt said. "I walk by it throughout the day and have these five-minute, whistled conversations. But, essentially, I have to kill it every day and turn it back on the next day."

Not only are the whistling machines fluent and fluid conversationalists, capable of concocting their own lilting variations, they're also very well-traveled.

"The fact is, this piece is shown as far as Spain and Croatia, and sometimes when it whistles back at you here in America, it might whistle back at you a whistle it heard in Spain," Holt said. "It speaks internationally."

While Holt enjoys the company of the whistling machines, he said the honey-speakered contraptions irk some of his colleagues.

"A lot of people here don't like it because it annoys the hell out of them because it whistles all day," Holt said. "But if you like what it has to say, as I do, well then, it's a pleasure to talk to."

Holt said that not only do the machines often hold high-pitched conversations with art connoisseurs, but they also converse with each other. But only when nobody else is around, because they don't want anyone else to hear what they're saying.

Even though the machines may be a bit shy, they're also compassionate to the inferior whistler.

"It has a perfectly breathy whistle, and [Bohen] specifically designed it to have a breathy whistle, so as to not intimidate poor whistlers," Holt said.

While these little tweedlers are a marvelment, many of the other pieces offer an equally intricate experience.

"Offering" tells of the distinct horror of living in a world where anything might descend from the sky at any time," Holt said. "The fear you see on their faces is the same fear we all experience from things that come out of the sky, such as suicide bombers, U.F.O. sightings...the ozone...These characters are just like us."

Betsy Manning, assistant to the director of Burchfield-Penney, found her attention drawn to a panel depicting a young child brandishing a pistol, as though it were a Tonka truck.

"The child with the gun makes you think because many children kill each other with guns, " Manning said. "It's a beautiful piece, but it really brings to mind today's society."

Rebekah Sipos, a junior art history student, appreciated the diversity of the show. But, when asked which piece stood out for her, chose Wet Spot."

"[It's] not just something hanging on the wall...," Sipos said.

While many of these pieces raise questions about all sorts of social issues, more than any other, it's Bohlen's "Whistling Machines" which beg the question, Is this art?

"I could easily argue that it's art because it communicates and it explores and it has a sense of design, which is created by the artist," Holt said. "So, if you think about it, it fulfills all the criteria of what makes a work of art."

Sheryl Nantus
12-14-2005, 11:05 PM
No, I don't. I'm a highly-experienced journalist and I'll send you clips if you want to see any. Unfortunately, the New York Times has impossible standards.



hate to be a realist, but maybe you might be better off starting with your sights a bit lower than the New York Times. Even a "highly-experienced journalist" may have to settle for being published elsewhere to start with.

and perhaps not shotgun your writing efforts across the map - choose one genre and take more courses, do more work in a single area than just pumping out all sorts of work across the spectrum.

reph
12-14-2005, 11:13 PM
Lantern, you mention clips. If some of your pieces have been published, those don't count in the tally of rejections. I understood from previous posts that you were published as a news and sports reporter.

By the way, in the one you posted, that isn't what "beg the question" means.

Lantern Jack
12-14-2005, 11:20 PM
Lantern, you mention clips. If some of your pieces have been published, those don't count in the tally of rejections. I understood from previous posts that you were published as a news and sports reporter.

By the way, in the one you posted, that isn't what "beg the question" means.

No, there's a difference, in my opinion, at least, between what you get published on an internship or for the school paper, and what you get published in connection with your larger writing career. And as for the other thing, about setting my sights a bit lower, I'm totally concentrating on lit reviews now, which are the most color-blind venue to break into.

Optimus
12-15-2005, 12:09 AM
If you've written 450 newspaper articles and haven't sold a single one, then, with all due respect, you need to study the form.

If the only thing you've been "published" in is a college newspaper, then I have to agree with Sassenach. One of my degrees is in journalism, too, and I've not only had articles published in our local paper, but I've done PR work for a local non-profit based on my writing and written for an online satire site (I decided that journalism isn't what I want to do, which is why I don't do it anymore unless asked).

It's not hard at all to get articles published in local newspapers, but your writing has to be noticeably better than the lower standards of a college rag. Once you get experience at the professional level (a real, local paper and not a college paper), and your work is of the highest journalistic standards, THEN you can try the NYT. Just because they have "high" standards, doesn't mean they're impossible. It just means that your writing doesn't meet their high standards. Don't blame it on them. There are obviously plenty of people throughout the years who've been able to get their writing up to snuff.

I'm not trying to be insulting, just honest. From reading the clip you posted a few posts ago, if that is representative of your journalistic writing style, I can see why you've yet to have an article printed in a legitimate paper.

It's not written journalistically at all, even if it is a Feature (which is what I'm guessing it was, since it matches that format more than a news clip).

College papers print more from newbs and let more slide because the students are learning and don't really know how to write a proper article yet. The writing style you used to construct that article printed in that college paper most likely wouldn't fly in a real newspaper.

So, were I you, I'd follow Sass's advice and study the format more. I'm sure you'll take that as some grand insult and start venting diatriabes and vitriol at me for pointing that out, but from a journalistic standpoint, it's the truth.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 03:32 AM
If the only thing you've been "published" in is a college newspaper, then I have to agree with Sassenach. One of my degrees is in journalism, too, and I've not only had articles published in our local paper, but I've done PR work for a local non-profit based on my writing and written for an online satire site (I decided that journalism isn't what I want to do, which is why I don't do it anymore unless asked).

It's not hard at all to get articles published in local newspapers, but your writing has to be noticeably better than the lower standards of a college rag. Once you get experience at the professional level (a real, local paper and not a college paper), and your work is of the highest journalistic standards, THEN you can try the NYT. Just because they have "high" standards, doesn't mean they're impossible. It just means that your writing doesn't meet their high standards. Don't blame it on them. There are obviously plenty of people throughout the years who've been able to get their writing up to snuff.

I'm not trying to be insulting, just honest. From reading the clip you posted a few posts ago, if that is representative of your journalistic writing style, I can see why you've yet to have an article printed in a legitimate paper.

It's not written journalistically at all, even if it is a Feature (which is what I'm guessing it was, since it matches that format more than a news clip).

College papers print more from newbs and let more slide because the students are learning and don't really know how to write a proper article yet. The writing style you used to construct that article printed in that college paper most likely wouldn't fly in a real newspaper.

So, were I you, I'd follow Sass's advice and study the format more. I'm sure you'll take that as some grand insult and start venting diatriabes and vitriol at me for pointing that out, but from a journalistic standpoint, it's the truth.

I did three internships at local papers, one of them paid. I like the word "vitriolic," though. I don't read it nearly enough.

Optimus
12-15-2005, 04:07 AM
A monkey with a typewriter can get an internship at a local paper, especially if the typewriting monkey is a college student at the time. Local news media are all about giving internships to college kids.

Did any of these internships lead to jobs after graduation? If no, that should tell you something.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 04:17 AM
A monkey with a typewriter can get an internship at a local paper, especially if the typewriting monkey is a college student at the time. Local news media are all about giving internships to college kids.

Did any of these internships lead to jobs after graduation? If no, that should tell you something.

I scored A and B grades in all of them and I had the toughest grader in the county, internship-wise. This guy once chased a kid into the street when he was a teenager and the other kid was run over by a car and killed. He had an affair with his English teacher and got her fired and didn't care a whit. Furthermore, he told me when I started out, "I'm a hard grader. Mess with me, I'll come down on you like a guillotine. Clear?" However, I live in Buffalo, which has a severely dilapidated economy and newspapers are letting people go everywhere. And, also by the way, this "typewriting monkey" has interviewed and written articles on French diplomats, authors, police chiefs and award-winning doctors.

Sheryl Nantus
12-15-2005, 04:28 AM
hard fact is that no one's buying what you're selling - maybe it's the area you live in (doubtful if you're sending queries out of town) or another factor, but truth is that you're not selling your writing. That's a pretty good indication that somewhere your craft is lacking, yes?

you may have been a prodigy in school but it's not transferring into the real world - so, again, you may want to consider further education or honing at least one part of your craft to get those sales.

Optimus
12-15-2005, 04:35 AM
And, also by the way, this "typewriting monkey" has interviewed and written articles on French diplomats, authors, police chiefs and award-winning doctors.

Uh huh.

And, how many of those interviews were done after college ANDhave been PUBLISHED?

I'm also wondering how one is a "tough grader" when it comes to internships. Most internship grades (especially in journalism) are conferred upon by both the supervisor at the place where the internship is done and the internship coordinator at the school and the grade is a reflection on a host of factors, writing ability not necessarily the most prominent of those.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 04:37 AM
Uh huh.

And, how many of those interviews were done after college ANDhave been PUBLISHED?

I'm not sure what you're asking me?

Optimus
12-15-2005, 04:43 AM
You're bragging about your "prestigious" interviews as some sort of validation of your abilities or a defense to my (and several others') assertions that perhaps your writing isn't up to publishable standards.

Therefore, since you're trying to defend your ability by boasting of your interviews, then I'm asking how many of these interviews have been professionally published in articles or led to some sort of published professional work?

In the real world, journalistic publication is generally a reflection of one's writing ability (though there are other factors which affect publication). In other words, WHO you interview isn't as important as HOW WELL you WRITE the article.

If you interviewed all of these great, important people, as you're so bragging, yet still have yet to be professionally published, then that (plus reading the sample you posted previously in this thread) lead me to the conclusion that your writing chops aren't at the level you believe them to be, which could explain why you've yet to publish anything professionally (college publications don't count).

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 04:44 AM
hard fact is that no one's buying what you're selling - maybe it's the area you live in (doubtful if you're sending queries out of town) or another factor, but truth is that you're not selling your writing. That's a pretty good indication that somewhere your craft is lacking, yes?

you may have been a prodigy in school but it's not transferring into the real world - so, again, you may want to consider further education or honing at least one part of your craft to get those sales.

Jenna thinks I "could be a literary giant."

Optimus
12-15-2005, 04:46 AM
Then why hasn't she hired you to write something for paid publication?

And, she's obviously only one out of 2,129 people. Perhaps her standards are different?

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 04:51 AM
You're bragging about your "prestigious" interviews as some sort of defense to my (and several others') assertions that perhaps your writing isn't up to publishable standards.

Therefore, since you're trying to defend your ability by boasting of your interviews, then I'm asking how many of these interviews have been professionally published in articles or led to some sort of published professional work?

In the real world, journalistic publication is most oftentimes a reflection of writing ability. In other words, WHO you interview isn't as important as HOW WELL you WRITE the article.

If you interviewed all of these great, important people, as you're so bragging, yet still have yet to be professionally published, then that (plus reading the sample you posted previously in this thread) lead me to the conclusion that your writing chops aren't at the level you believe them to be, which could explain why you've yet to publish anything professionally (college publications don't count).

"Bragging." What the ****ing hell can I do to defend myself? Huh? Everything I say is either strawmen or ad hominem or bragging or whatever. You say you're showing me a "tough love approach," but the more I talk to you, it's become violently apparent you're going to attack everything I say and fall back on a "tough love" defense.

I even showed you one of my articles and you didn't say a damn word about it. You didn't offer advice, criticism, anything. I pointed it out to you twice. Here's a logical argument, completely clean of logical fallacies: if you really want to help me, how come I offered you a chance to help me and you just continue to lecture?

Boy, Elisa was right, you are just trying to be inflammatory.

Optimus
12-15-2005, 05:11 AM
Are you talking about that article you PMed me several weeks ago? That's not my genre so I couldn't comment.

As for the article you posted in this thread, had I offered any kind of critique on it, knowing you, you would have gotten defensive, attacked me as always, and then lectured me on how you didn't post it for critique.

In reviewing this thread, it's apparent that the general response has been to tell you that your writing isn't up to publishable standards (your journalistic writing, that is). I've also noticed, as you've pointed out, that no one has offered any advice on what to do about remedying that.

Fair enough. I'll give some tips.

If you already have your journalism degree, then I assume you should at least have a background in the style and format, so you can build from that.

Here are two suggestions:

1) Find an old journalism professor of yours from your old college and ask him/her to mentor you. Go out, as I'm sure you've done already, and find topics to write news articles on. Write both regular stock news articles and also feature articles (similar formats yet they require slightly different writing styles) both on topics which interest you and topics which bore the living sh!t out of you (because, as a paid writer, you may be given assignments to cover stories which you hate or get assigned beats which you find totally boring, but you still have to make them sound interesting in your articles).

Turn these into your mentor every week or two (depending on how much time that person has to devote to mentoring you) and ask for advice on how to clean them up, get them into shape, how to approach them, "am I on the right track?", etc.

They give them back to you with appropriate notes and you then apply their advice to your next article. With a lot of hard work and practice, I guarantee you can get your journalism up to publishable standards by going about it this way. Also, at the end of this mentoring, you'll have a large portfolio of well-polished writing which may help to land you a job.

2) Do the same as above, but rather than an old professor, ask someone at a local paper or news station to mentor you. These people LOVE to have their a$$es kissed, and if you treat them like they're a respected "pro," they'll probably take you on to mentor in their spare time. Puff up the egos enough and they'll be more than happy to pass on their knowledge and experience to you. And, after the mentoring is over, you'll have made some real contacts in the business which you can hit up for jobs.

If you're nice, I might even be persuaded to look at an article or two and give some pointers from my very limited and years ago experience and knowledge, but I'd imagine there are others on the board who have much more journalism experience than I. But, you'd probably gain much more valuable info by doing one of the two things I listed above.

I hope some of this helps.

JennaGlatzer
12-15-2005, 05:30 AM
Then why hasn't she hired you to write something for paid publication?

Actually, I have.

Of course, that's beside the point.

But I have. On assignment. I suspect LJ is talking about all these articles/essays he's written on spec and hasn't sold... which boggles my mind sometimes.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 09:48 AM
Lantern Jack, hiding behind Jenna: Yeah, what she said.

Naw, I'm just messin'.

Actually, here's the deal, back about five years ago, in my first semester of journalism, I was young and hotheaded and wholly arrogant (not the bastion of coolheaded rationale that I am now:ROFL: ) and I punched out a whole mess of book reviews and opinion pieces and mailed them off to the New York Times and Chicago Tribune and, of course, got the axe, bewilderingly, again and again. The folks at the Times and Tribune weren't the least amused by ingenuous insolence and sent all of my pieces winging back to me.

After that, every single other rejection (we're not factoring in agent rejections here; if we were, we'd be closer to 4,500) has been from lit reviews, but that's because, frankly, I tended to overdo it when I try to be literary. I've also recently learned to rein myself in, but haven't had time to send anything out in the last six months because I've been engaged elsewhere.

As for not getting picked up by a local paper, it's pretty much solely because A) Most of them are cutting back, and B) I don't have a car, and can't get one until I get hired somewhere.

It's a vicious circle, see?

And the reason I haven't been hired in another out-of-state newspaper is entirely car-related, or they want someone closer. You have to have absolutely ecstatic credentials before they haul you in from the other coast.

Master Bedroom
12-15-2005, 09:54 AM
And there would have to be job vacancies available.



And even if there is, I could imagined that there a millions other people, trying to do what you are doing.



What about your novels, what genre are they, have you sent them to many agents, it seems to me that your main concern is journalism?

Maybe you should focus on your novels, unless you have or what not, I am just throwing things out their.

September skies
12-15-2005, 09:59 AM
wow ... talk about perseverence!
Well, send another one -- if you're really keeping track and you have that many, what's one more? And just think - the next one may not be a rejection!

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 10:04 AM
wow ... talk about perseverence!
Well, send another one -- if you're really keeping track and you have that many, what's one more? And just think - the next one may not be a rejection!

Yes, it's that kind of thinking that inspired speed dating. Onward and upward. New York's motto: Excelsior!

Master Bedroom
12-15-2005, 10:11 AM
Just out of curiosity, did you send the NY times your interest?


Fishing, reading, writing (duh), running, hiking, being surly, mining my nose, peeing in the shower.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 10:12 AM
And there would have to be job vacancies available.



And even if there is, I could imagined that there a millions other people, trying to do what you are doing.



What about your novels, what genre are they, have you sent them to many agents, it seems to me that your main concern is journalism?

Maybe you should focus on your novels, unless you have or what not, I am just throwing things out their.

Welcome to the club, Newbie.

They call me Lantern Jack, and this is my native greeting:

Drops drawers, bends over and drops something else.

My main concern, O and alas, is not journalism. My one dream, my main goal, my animus, my raison dietre (did I sp that right?) is to publish a novel. I had a novel novel idea (two actually), which I won't share because, frankly, I'm a certified paranoid.

It's really nothing personal, but I don't trust anybody as far as I can shotput them (except Jenna; she's proven herself loyal, but she went through quite the crucible, let me tell you; oh, and Zach, too; Truman Coyote to you; Oh, and Elisa; and Celia's growing on me).

My original dream was to be a poet. So I spent four years reading nothing but poetry. 10,000 volumes. But I couldn't make it as a poet. Too hard of a market to break into. Then I hit upon an ingenious novel idea and it was almost picked up by two different agents and an agent in Hollywood. He said there are quality scripts lying around all over the place, and if I want to get a movie made, I really have to publish a novel first.

And I do have a novel idea lined up, and a couple of projects on the back burner, but I published a good deal of material on the Internet, and now I'm worried that it's all stolen and chopped up and all the good bits sewn into other works and, if I try to publish anything from the stuff I put on the Internet, I'll be sued for plagiarizing my own work.

Like I said, I'm a paranoid.

Master Bedroom
12-15-2005, 10:17 AM
Not even a hint as to what you novel is about, I am looking for some good ideas?:popcorn:

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 10:24 AM
Not even a hint as to what you novel is about, I am looking for some good ideas?:popcorn:

Here's one for free:

The king dies and the queen dies of grief.

Here's another. I'll give you an entire novel, free.

The last man on Earth sat alone in an armchair in his study. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door.

And if you like those, I can get you some clerihews at retail.

Sassenach
12-15-2005, 08:02 PM
And the reason I haven't been hired in another out-of-state newspaper is entirely car-related, or they want someone closer. You have to have absolutely ecstatic credentials before they haul you in from the other coast.

P-shaw. If you visit any of the journalism job boards [Media Bistro, etc.] you'll see many ads for jobs around the country. If one is qualified, one applies. Most places don't pay relocation costs, unless one is very high up the food chain.


[As for 'ecstatic credentials'. I'll assume that's the overwriting you mention you sometimes do.]

Sheryl Nantus
12-15-2005, 08:43 PM
P-shaw. If you visit any of the journalism job boards [Media Bistro, etc.] you'll see many ads for jobs around the country. If one is qualified, one applies. Most places don't pay relocation costs, unless one is very high up the food chain.
[As for 'ecstatic credentials'. I'll assume that's the overwriting you mention you sometimes do.]

good point - unfortunately you may have to go to where the jobs are, if you see your city as a deadend for your type of writing.

and it's darned rare that a company is going to pay you to relocate, no matter WHAT the job - I've only heard of it rarely happening and usually in engineering fields where they really, REALLY want someone to come and work someplace else.

Sassenach
12-15-2005, 08:57 PM
Lantern:

No one's going to sue you for plagiarizing yourself. But I'm sure you already know that.

Ditto on anyone stealing your work. You probably already know that as well.

My advice is to spend less time worrying and looking for attention on these boards, and more time writing.

eldragon
12-15-2005, 09:06 PM
It means nothing coming from me, as I have no professional credentials .....but I read part of LJ's story about the mule festival, and I was captivated by both his writing style and the content of the story.


I only read non-fiction and read pretty much anything as long as it's true. I have read thousands of books, memoirs and such. I see bad writing everyday ...........everyday. And, what I read written by LJ was very good.


I read some to my husband, and he was also impressed.


Again, and unfortunately, we're nobodies, struggling ourselves. I have had zero luck with my book .......although its been on the table of some big publisher's ......nobody had taken the bait.

After the new year - I'm going to self publish.



LJ has one of those black clouds over him. I completely understand. He has had a tough history.

LJ - persevere. One of these days, if you don't give up and find the right venue for your writing ........you'll be famous.

aka eraser
12-15-2005, 09:32 PM
It's not a question of whether or not Jack has the writing chops to succeed. An illiterate could see that he has more natural writing ability than most any four or five of us put together.

It's a question of playing the game - of tailoring one's writing to fit the particular pub. I thudded my head against that wall for years, with results somewhat similar to Jack's. Few established (establishment) papers/mags tolerate gonzo writing. Jack, you say you're working on reining yourself in. That's a good start. You might also consider alternative papers, what we used to call "underground" papers in the 60s and 70s. Though most are also run by suits these days and are as concerned about the bottom line as the NY Times, they tend to give their writers a longer, looser, literary leash.

Instead of trying to gatecrash parties that don't want your kind, look for the ones who do. When you've made your name, you'll start getting invites to the parties of those who previously snubbed you.

Sassenach
12-15-2005, 10:47 PM
It's not a question of whether or not Jack has the writing chops to succeed. An illiterate could see that he has more natural writing ability than most any four or five of us put together.



I don't know about that...

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 10:49 PM
It's not a question of whether or not Jack has the writing chops to succeed. An illiterate could see that he has more natural writing ability than most any four or five of us put together.

It's a question of playing the game - of tailoring one's writing to fit the particular pub. I thudded my head against that wall for years, with results somewhat similar to Jack's. Few established (establishment) papers/mags tolerate gonzo writing. Jack, you say you're working on reining yourself in. That's a good start. You might also consider alternative papers, what we used to call "underground" papers in the 60s and 70s. Though most are also run by suits these days and are as concerned about the bottom line as the NY Times, they tend to give their writers a longer, looser, literary leash.

Instead of trying to gatecrash parties that don't want your kind, look for the ones who do. When you've made your name, you'll start getting invites to the parties of those who previously snubbed you.

I was wondering when the Fish Whisperer would make a blessed appearance. Mr. Eraser, on behalf of us other lowlies, I'm flattered by your presence.

And, as always, you speak the truth. Unfortunately, and for once, through no fault of my own, I ran into trouble with the two alternative newspapers in Buffalo: Artvoice and The Beast.

With Artvoice, it's a case of having all the advantages and running into an utterly incompetent editor. I've been rejected by everybody---The Times, The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's---but every single one of them has rejected me courteously and punctually, every one, except for this editor at Artvoice. She has received six ms. of mine in the mail and never responded in any way to them. I actually schlepped my a ss eight hours to see her in person and, though I diligently called back several times, she never responded.

That's inexcusable action for an editor. And I'm friends with their top columnist, so I have no idea why Laura treats me so shabbily.

With The Beast, it's a question of them commissioning my work and then forgetting to run it after I bust my a s s to hammer it together. I don't mind being rejected; what I mind being is forgotten.

But, still, all the same, O Mighty Fish Whisperer, your advice is much appreciated.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 10:51 PM
I don't know about that...

Simple answer. Go up a few posts and you'll find Jenna's of the opinion that I can and she's even put her money where her mouth is.

Take care.

Sassenach
12-15-2005, 11:02 PM
Simple answer. Go up a few posts and you'll find Jenna's of the opinion that I can and she's even put her money where her mouth is.

Take care.

Does that mean she's publishing you in the Premium ed of AW?

I respect Jenna's judgment. I was simply questioning eraser's assertion.

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 11:32 PM
Does that mean she's publishing you in the Premium ed of AW?

I respect Jenna's judgment. I was simply questioning eraser's assertion.

You don't see the contradiction there? If both people say a writer's talented, and you disagree with one and not the other, well, I'm sorry, Hon, but that just doesn't add up.

Adioz, all you hep cats and swingin' chicks

JennaGlatzer
12-15-2005, 11:36 PM
Thanks for trusting my judgment. ;) You'd have to read personal essays of Jack's to really see his chops. I came across an essay of his months ago and was blown away enough to hire him to write for me (nothing to do with Absolute Write, but I'd rather not get into specifics). Couldn't stop thinking about it for weeks. He screws around here, but when he writes memoir-ish material, it's powerful stuff. That's why I'm still very surprised that lit mags aren't touching his work. But I suspect it's a matter of time.

(Sorry for talking about you like you're not here, LJ.)

Sassenach
12-15-2005, 11:39 PM
You don't see the contradiction there? If both people say a writer's talented, and you disagree with one and not the other, well, I'm sorry, Hon, but that just doesn't add up.

Adioz, all you hep cats and swingin' chicks

No it isn't. I contain multitudes. I'm questioning eraser's assertion that you're better than 'four or five of us combined.'

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 11:48 PM
No it isn't. I contain multitudes. I'm questioning eraser's assertion that you're better than 'four or five of us combined.'

Oh, now that I agree with. His general assertion was that I'm a quality writer. You should have chimed in that you were contesting one of his hyperbolic statements.

And, flattering though it may be, sorry, Eraser, I have to agree with Sasquatch.

See, Hon?

I'm perfectly reasonable, when I'm lucid, and the planets align, and all heaven is sitting upon my brain.

And why the hell do I keep calling you "Hon"? I'm not a waitress in a greasy spoon.

Or am I?

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 11:53 PM
Thanks for trusting my judgment. ;) You'd have to read personal essays of Jack's to really see his chops. I came across an essay of his months ago and was blown away enough to hire him to write for me (nothing to do with Absolute Write, but I'd rather not get into specifics). Couldn't stop thinking about it for weeks. He screws around here, but when he writes memoir-ish material, it's powerful stuff. That's why I'm still very surprised that lit mags aren't touching his work. But I suspect it's a matter of time.

(Sorry for talking about you like you're not here, LJ.)

I just carried on a very animated conversation with Tom Cruise and Peter Jackson, and they're not here.

And, sad to say, I'm wholly not jesting here.

P.S. Why does everybody hate Tom Cruise and not Brad Pitt? I love Tom, and not just because he's a hottie. Not even because of that. He's a gymnast who does his own stunts in his movies and he almost always picks quality, engaging roles, and he donates lots of moolah to charity. He once dumped $5,000 out of his own pocket into a box for charity for this cancer patient when he was in a restaurant while filming War of the Worlds.

That's class. We should all aspire to be like Tom! Bashing soft sciences and philanthropizing right and left.

Sarita
12-15-2005, 11:55 PM
Ew, I hate Brad Pitt. (I'm more of a Robert Downey/Johnny Depp fan...)

(*cough* just pretend I'm not here, getting the thread off topic...)

Lantern Jack
12-15-2005, 11:55 PM
And, Mrs. Jenna, I'd tell you you're brilliant, too, but that's like saying that the Earth is round and mankind is murderous by nature, truths so blatantly obvious they're apparent to the dimmest two year old.

And now, someone please hand me some scissors, so I can unsuture my lips from Jenna's butt.

aka eraser
12-16-2005, 12:07 AM
No it isn't. I contain multitudes. I'm questioning eraser's assertion that you're better than 'four or five of us combined.'

Sass, you quoted me accurately the first time, but not this time. I qualified my statement with "most any" four or five...etc.

A tad hyberbolic maybe - but writers have been known to use that device to underscore a point.

Lantern Jack
12-16-2005, 12:32 AM
Ew, I hate Brad Pitt. (I'm more of a Robert Downey/Johnny Depp fan...)

(*cough* just pretend I'm not here, getting the thread off topic...)

Johnny Depp is the greatest thespian of our generation. Wait, do we share the same generation? I'm X, what're you?

Sarita
12-16-2005, 12:38 AM
X - I'm 29. And I agree. He's amazing in range and ability.

eldragon
12-16-2005, 12:46 AM
Yes to Johnny Depp

Yes to Bradd Pitt since he became a do- gooder, that's my kind of man.


The thought of Tom Cruise doing gymnastics makes me want to puke.


The thought of Tom Cruise makes me want to puke.

Sassenach
12-16-2005, 12:50 AM
P.S. Why does everybody hate Tom Cruise and not Brad Pitt?


I have no opinion on Brad, but I hate Tom because he's a mediocre actor and an apologist for a whacko cult.

Optimus
12-16-2005, 02:08 AM
Johnny Depp is the greatest thespian of our generation. Wait, do we share the same generation? I'm X, what're you?

OMG, I agree with something Jack said.


*checks temperature*

Mike Coombes
12-16-2005, 02:37 AM
2,128 places hit up.

Number of publications: The big, fat goose egg.

And yet, people keep telling me I have talent,

You need to stop listening to your mother. Seriously, and I mean no disrespect, by the law of averages you should have had something published by now even if only by accident.

I think you may have to consider the fact that it's just possible that your writing sucks. Maybe.

JennaGlatzer
12-16-2005, 02:40 AM
Wow, really? I like Johnny, but I don't see any big range there. Someone give me an example of his diversity... I usually just see him playing misunderstood, outsiderish characters who don't talk a lot. (Oh. And I never watched 21 Jump Street.) I thought young Leo kicked his acting butt in What's Eating Gilbert Grape, and I'm tough to please when it comes to actors portraying mentally disabled characters-- wanted to slap Juliette Lewis in The Other Sister for transparent acting.

No particularly strong opinions on either Tom or Brad. Brad's cuter, though.

JennaGlatzer
12-16-2005, 02:44 AM
I think you may have to consider the fact that it's just possible that your writing sucks. Maybe.

You would think, right? Except that it doesn't... hence the head-scratching.

Unless every piece that I haven't read of LJ's sucks and I (and Frank, and Elisa) just happened to read the good stuff. What do you think, LJ? Are you sending total poop to these lit mags and saving the good stuff for us?

Jamesaritchie
12-16-2005, 03:29 AM
You would think, right? Except that it doesn't... hence the head-scratching.

Unless every piece that I haven't read of LJ's sucks and I (and Frank, and Elisa) just happened to read the good stuff. What do you think, LJ? Are you sending total poop to these lit mags and saving the good stuff for us?



I don't know about sucks. Maybe just not marketable? There's sure as anyting something he's doing wrong. I'd say it's flat out impossible to receive so many rejections unless something is incredibly wrong with either the writing, or the focus, or the submission.

I've only read a couple of things Lantern Jack has posted here, and while I wouldn't say any of it actively sucked, I didn't see anything that would interest an editor, either.

Just my opinion, but I think he usually does moderately well with the actual writing, a bit above average, which should be good enough to sell at least a few things, but it also seems to me he has no idea what it is that makes something marketable.

Optimus
12-16-2005, 04:01 AM
Wow, really? I like Johnny, but I don't see any big range there. Someone give me an example of his diversity... I usually just see him playing misunderstood, outsiderish characters who don't talk a lot.
You've been watching the wrong films. He mostly plays quirky characters, yet each one is very divergent from the last and he captures the nuance of each character beautifully.

Some examples (not all great films, but good performances by Depp):

Dead Men (one of his most underrated, if not best)
Donny Brasco
Benny and Joon
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Blow
Chocolat
Pirates of the Caribbean
Ed Wood
Finding Neverland

pepperlandgirl
12-16-2005, 04:24 AM
Dead Man is probably one of the best westerns ever made. Johnny Depp plays an accountant from Cleveland named William Blake who is shot in the heart and befriended by an eduated Indian named Nobody (who insists that William Blake is THE William Blake). It's weird and beautiful--but else would you expect from a Jim Jarmusch vehicle?

Ed Wood is also wonderful...

Master Bedroom
12-16-2005, 04:40 AM
Sorry, this might be off topic, but I have to throw in my 2 cents in…

Two great actors I love to see on the screen, Denzel Washington and Danny Davitoe (Did I spell that right?).
Both are big range actors, I mean if anybody deserves an academy award for best actor it is Denzel.

Johny D. did do a good job in that pirate movie, but I think his best work was 21 Jumpstreet.


To keep on topic, Maybe LJ should be made the patron saint of rejected writers, to give us that inspiration to keep going even in the face of absolute absurdity.. I love ya man.http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/images/smilies/emoteHail.gif

elisadasilva
12-16-2005, 06:44 AM
Dearest LJ,

I say you buy a dilapidated bar and use those rejection slips as wallpaper. Writers worldwide would visit and add their own autographed slips. You could hang portraits of all your fave authors and photoshop yourself into the photos. All of your fans would congregate, drinking wine until they barf. It would be wonderful.

Anyone who says or even suggest LJ is NOT a fantastic writer doesn't know what the flip they're saying.

Jack. Van Gough didn't have success either but he was still amazing. Don't worry, you don't have to whack off your ear, just keep sending. One day you will get the recognition and moolah you truly deserve because you are supercalifractialiciousexpiallahdoscious. Finish your memoir.

reph
12-16-2005, 06:59 AM
...it also seems to me he has no idea what it is that makes something marketable.
Ah. That gets me thinking. Lantern, the features of your posts that stand out for me are emotionality and complex use of language. Those would seem a poor fit with journalism. Successful article writers might have smaller vocabularies and less engagement with the sensuous quality of words and phrases. They aren't so Joycean. They focus on the subject, not on the description.

Unfortunately, I don't know what market is more Joycean for someone who isn't Joyce.

Lantern Jack
12-16-2005, 09:45 AM
Boy, when you little scamps get together, you're worse than a sewing circle.

Okay, let me knock these off one by one.

My top three favorite actors: John Malkovich, Lance Henriksen and Dame Judi Dench

My top 10 favorite films: Near Dark, Walkabout, The Wicker Man, The Seventh Seal, Speed, The Butcher Boy, Spirited Away, Titus, Sleepy Hollow and Mulholland Drive.

Why haven't I been published? Three reasons:

1) High standards. I always shoot for the stars: The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Paris Review, The Kenyon Review, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, The Missouri Review.

2) I have an incredible amount of style, but, until recently, I didn't have form.

3) I favor a scatter gun over a sniper's rifle.

As for not being hired yet. Three things:

1) I can name at least five fellow journalists from college who spent a year before landing positions; six months is not unheard of. Go to www.journalismjobs.com (http://www.journalismjobs.com/). There they say it takes an average of four to eight months to land a position. The people I worked with during my internships said that journalism is a gypsy lifestyle. There's no financial security. Most journalists live at home a long time before finding a job that lets supports them.

2) I have a highly neurotic personality and I greatly vex people.

3) I don't own a car. This is the one that's gotten me in the most trouble. I'd have landed a position long ago if I had a car. This I know for a fact. But, O and alas, I can't drive very well and can't afford a car, plus gas, plus insurance. I'd have to get 2 or 3 jobs just to earn the car.

As for the quality of my work: I'd post some of my best work, but, as I've now stated at least 15 times, I'm very paranoid about unsavory characters thieving my work on the Internet (not any of you fine folks, other unsavory characters, like Jenna; just gaze deep into those obsidian peepers; she's pure evil!)

Last but not least, if you chime into a thread, Mr. Coombes (apologies if I misspelled your name), it would behoove you to read all preceeding posts before tacking on a post of your own. Your statement has all ready been addressed and discredited.

Oh, and Optimus, the sample I posted here was the last thing I ever published in college. The editor let me have a little fun. It was the only thing I had at hand at the moment and I posted it to show you I can take a subject and make it interesting. That was your challenge and I think I met it. If you want to see form, I will gladly show you something which more closely adheres to the inverted pyramid. Thank you for your comments.

Simply yours,
LJ

Master Bedroom
12-16-2005, 11:48 AM
The last man on Earth sat alone in an armchair in his study. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door.




I was thinking, he gets up and answers the door, of Cause, and it is two Mormons.

They are glade to finally find someone alive to witness to, but this guy is like, “Sorry, I’m not interests.”

And thier saying, “Just give us five minuets of your time.”

And he is like, “I am not interested in your stupid bloody church.”

And so you have this semblance of normality in an otherwise abnormal situation?






Why haven't I been published? Three reasons:

1) High standards. I always shoot for the stars: The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Paris Review, The Kenyon Review, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, The Missouri Review.




Ignoring your other excuses for a second…
You know nothing about getting to the top, you have to start at the bottom, and work your way up. The only way you will get into those places, is when they notice you and offer you a place with them.



OK... I'll go back into my cave now…

aruna
12-16-2005, 01:18 PM
LJ, as I've told you, I thinkyou are an excellent writer but your stuff is perhaps just too quirky for the market you've mentioned. I think you need to research the market more and either a) find publications that your work would suit
or b) write to suit the publications youi want to get into.

Nicholas S.H.J.M Woodhouse
12-16-2005, 10:57 PM
perhaps LJ you should look into serials?
for small local papers (student campus papers perhaps), they might want to do little diary-esque pieces in each issue, which might help create a rep for journalism of a nature.

good luck mate

Lantern Jack
12-16-2005, 11:06 PM
Okay, for the next four days, nobody say anything nasty or trying or kindly critical or tough love or whatever to me, please. I've set a task for myself, the toughest and tryingest writing task I've ever put to myself, and I need every ounce and drip and tittle and dreg of self esteem I can muster in order to accomplish it. These may very well be the most important words I set down, life-altering, career-affirming. I'm trying to catch the attention of an eye only caught by the most glittery and uniform of bijous, so, thank you, dearly, truly, to all of you (even Optimus), for your well-meaning, meticulously-assembled advices and critiques, but, for the next two or three or four days, Sorry, fella, clean house, it's all health food.

Please. Thank you in advance for your consideration and, I know, I know...I may have to take it, but I don't have to like it.

And please and thank you and please and thank you again and again and again.

I shall now summon and channel my feeble mental energies into conjuring an incantatory jinni to grant my fondest and dearest and only wish.

Thank you again.

zarch
12-17-2005, 08:10 AM
say what?

Lantern Jack
12-20-2005, 08:28 AM
All finished!

And the chapters came out as well as I could've hoped. It's out of Frodo's hands now. Have to trust Master Gandalf to speedily convey the material posthaste.

Fly Messr. Gandalf, fly!!!

Sorry, I'm exclusively reading Tolkien this month. Considering how grisly and glacial Buffalo gets in the winter, I prefer to meander about the lush bounty of Middle Earth while the wintry weather rolls off down from the Misty Mountains.

Just be glad I'm still speaking modern English.

JennaGlatzer
12-20-2005, 12:28 PM
Oh, good, this means we can insult you again, right?

I'll go think of a good one.

Lantern Jack
12-20-2005, 01:08 PM
Oh, good, this means we can insult you again, right?

I'll go think of a good one.

Let fly, O High Queen of the Nasty Shivs!

FolkloreFanatic
12-23-2005, 09:31 AM
For give me while I go off-topic for a minute before addressing the real point of this thread!


Wow, really? I like Johnny, but I don't see any big range there. Someone give me an example of his diversity... I usually just see him playing misunderstood, outsiderish characters who don't talk a lot. (Oh. And I never watched 21 Jump Street.) I thought young Leo kicked his acting butt in What's Eating Gilbert Grape, and I'm tough to please when it comes to actors portraying mentally disabled characters-- wanted to slap Juliette Lewis in The Other Sister for transparent acting.

I think there's a huge difference between Donnie Brasco and Crybaby and Don Juan DeMarco and Pirates Of The Caribbean and Sleepy Hollow and The Libertine and What's Eating Gilbert Grape and The Man Who Cried, but that could just be me. ;)

He's about as diversified as they come. Sure, Tim Burton's characters have had some similarities, but personality-wise, he's run the gamut. If I had to name one single actor as good as Brando was, it would be he. Coincidentally, I believed that *before* Brando said as much and I read it in print.

He's done a few doosies as well, which is why I prevented myself from ever watching the remake of Charlie & The Chocolate Factory. I wanted to preserve my respect for him, as well as for Gene. O.o

I think DiCaprio is seriously underrated; he's done some great work. I don't really think he did better in WEGG--they both were fantastic, as I recall. Then again, I haven't seen it in a while.

There. I'll make another post on-tpic in a sec. :)

FolkloreFanatic
12-23-2005, 10:03 AM
LJ, I don't have to read your work to believe you have talent--for one, I trust Jenna's judgement; for another, your range of vocabulary is very good and you obviously can string sentences together well enough to be published (maybe not in the most ideal sense of the word, but published somewhere nonetheless).

I'll add all the usual caveats here: I'm not a truly established writer, take with a grain of salt, don't take what I say too personally, even if you do anyway, yada, yada, yada.

Your style of conversation, even on these boards, strikes me as that of one suffering under the intense emotional stress generated from both writing and analyzing your work in a manic state. I'm assuming you're bipolar, especially since you mentioned the problem in jest earlier and your responses about medication seem to indicate this. If I'm incorrect, ignore everything that follows.

My aunt is bipolar; my roommate was severely bipolar and had a nervous breakdown during my time with her, and I have some suspicion that I may be bipolar as well, though before experimenting with different cocktails before deciding to stick with zoloft, my distress periods were much more pronounced than they are now. I humbly submit that I have had enough experience to speak with some authority on writing while bipolar.

Some of your best work will form and evolve in a manic state; the correlation between creativity and mental disorders is no coincidence. Most of my beat work congeals when I'm at one extreme of the emotional spectrum or the other. However, this doesn't mean that one should try to edit or analyze one's work while in the same mindset.

The roommate in question once wrote an essay for submission to an online forum for a seminar assignment (some of Harvard's classes require that you post weekly essays in addition to other written work so that everyone in the class can read over your opinions of the current material and debate them accordingly). She spent two hours on it, frequently getting up to pace the room, jubilant and positive it was the best short essay she'd written in months. Unfortunately, the server timed out while she was typing, and she hadn't saved the piece in a word processor because everything had started flowing out of her in waves before she could open up MS Word. What followed was a massive three-hour long panic about the disappearing post. It was a brilliant argument, she had been so sure of it, and she was devastated that she had to write another essay. After submitting her work, she tried to delete the post several times, convinced the entire class would laugh at her for her stupidity (about what, I never knew). She was inconsolable.

In the morning, it turned out that the first post had indeed gone through as well as the second. She was calm after sleeping and remarked offhandedly to me later that day that it hadn't been nearly as brilliant as she had previously throught, but the second essay was much better than she had remembered.

The lesson in this (besides the point that one should acknowledge that one has a disorder, which she did not) is that if you're unable to separate your mood swings from your writing, it's impossible to view criticism, anyone's criticism, objectively and not take it as a personal attack. This includes your own, by the way. :)

I try to think of mania as I would a mid-price absinthe: it's fine to 'produce' under the influence, but you won't know how good of a buzz you had until it's over.

You said you're waiting on medication. I would wait on the editing as well.

Good luck! :)

TwentyFour
12-24-2005, 11:03 AM
Have you given any thought to self publishing? At least to get your career going?

Hannah
12-24-2005, 09:36 PM
Journalism is a tough business, but I would target some of the smaller (local) papers first.

I’m in college right now for journalism and I write for the school newspaper. I like to do investigative journalism, and feature stories (I do essays and stuff on the side for fun, and relaxation, even though I’ve had some of those published). Writing for the school newspaper gave me the confidence to approach the editor of my neighborhood paper and I’m freelancing for them now, getting paid for each story.

I was a little nervous at first because the college paper gave me some leverage as far as writing style, but I like to not stray too far from the rules. If I do, I’ll still throw in my facts, and maybe a little “nut-graph” in the middle if it’s a feature. But if its hard news, I will do the inverted pyramid.

I also think that each paper has a different style of writing. The New York Times is our model paper for class, but I think something like The Daily News, and The Village Voice is more of the style of writing that I’d like to do. I live in New York and I’d like to do my internship at the Voice.

Good-luck Lantern Jack, and I do believe that you are talented, but I do know that the form of journalistic style writing is a little different. :)

zeprosnepsid
01-10-2006, 02:37 AM
2) I have a highly neurotic personality and I greatly vex people.

Not to resurrect a slightly dead thread, but I've been reading parts of the board today that I don't usually read. I've made an observation and I don't know if it'll be of any help to LJ or not. Now, having read through this whole topic I have to say LJ, your posts kind of rub me the wrong way. The things you say, the way you say them, well frankly it turns me off (your defensiveness for instance). Now, if your writing is as good as you and others say it is, I honestly think the way you come off sometimes is absolutely your problem. You say you are too paranoid to post your writings, but I think you'd benefit more from posting your queries and cover letters. I highly suspect this is where the problem is. If only you could get people to get to the part where they actually read your work -- if your queries and covers are like your posts then I think they might not get that far.

I don't know the entire situation, how many partials have been requested or what notes if any you've gotten back from editors. There's nothing wrong with shooting for the stars. I submitted a short story to the New Yorker once too (why not?). But I think some focus and some people skills will do you wonders. People get hired all the time on people skills alone (not writing talent).

Anyway, several people in this thread have posted things trying to help you and if you have that many rejections, I think you should let us help you figure out where the problem is. There's a lot of great minds on this board willing to help, let them help.

And certainly good luck with your journalistic endeavors. It's a tough field.