Friday, October 30, 2009

Insecure? Check this out!

Yesterday I took a little writing break and tuned in to the Biography channel. They were doing a wonderful piece on author, Anne Rice. Have to admit I was fascinated with her story. She began writing in the 70's and her very first book? Interview With The Vampire. Her story wasn't much different than the stories we hear about lots of authors. She put together the book of her heart but couldn't sell it. She faced rejection after rejection. Naturally, that really caught my attention because MOST writers go through this.

Finally, she hooked a publisher for the story. Good for her! She was paid an advance of roughly $12,000 for the work, which at the time was pretty good money. She'd been living with her family in California but yearned to return to her roots in New Orleans. It wasn't until she wrote her third book (with a hefty advance of half a million) that her family could actually afford to relocate.

I don't think anyone can argue with the great successes she has had in her very long career. What I found really interesting was that reviewers and critics hated her work. They found it too flowery and that it was overly dramatic or purple-prosey. From all accounts she took this criticism to heart. She HATED being raked over the coals this way. didn't matter. Her stories flew to the tops of the bestseller's lists and readers loved her. Movies were made and money rolled in. YAY for Anne!

I'll admit that most of my reviews are pretty good but there HAVE been a few bad ones. They just killed me. They hurt my heart! Yes, I realize (and have been told repeatedly by friends) that this is just ONE person's opinion but I don't think it really hit me until yesterday how very true that is. To think that an author of Rice's popularity would worry about the scathing reviews of ONE PERSON makes me shake my head. Hell, all of us would love to find the success she has had over the years!

In other news: Today my husband and I celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary. He was in his first year of law school when we married in Houston, Texas to very little pomp and ceremony. Because of time constraints and yes, money, we married in the home of a local Justice of the Peace. He wore a nice suit and I wore a pretty but very average dress. There were no witnesses or friends or wedding cakes or gifts but we were fine with that. We were in love and we saw our lives spread out before us with infinite possibility. Now two kids later, happy successful careers for both of us, we are finally a couple again instead of a couple-with-kids. Once again, we are seeing the adventure ahead and it's nice.

Check out the BIG SALE at Ellora's Cave!!! All books featuring Vamps and Shifters are marked down drastically for Halloween. If you haven't read my shifter stories, now is a great time to pick up either Feral Moon, Highland Beast, Lone Star Lycan or Ringo's Ride. The sale won't last much longer so check em out. Hot shifters for a pittance. How can you go wrong?


julia barrett said...

We all do go through this, don't we? I try to take less than stellar reviews in stride. I've been rejected sooooo many times - goes with the territory. Just have to press on! Congrats on the anniversary!

Regina Carlysle said...

I agree. We kind of have to develop a thick hide in this business but wallowing in one stinging review gets ya nowhere fast. We have to keep on keeping on.

Anny Cook said...

Happy Anniversary, you kids! Snicker... 27 is great!

Fran Lee said...

Happy Anniversary! Hope you have a wonderful day...night. :)

Paris said...

Happy Anniversary! And I just love a sale;-) Thanks for reminding us all that reviews don't make or break a career.

Regina Carlysle said...

Yeah, I thought about this after the show was over. We just can't let bad things 'freeze' us. We've gotta continue on. If she'd let these reviews stop her we would be missing out on soooo many of her wonderful books.

Steven King's biography story was on after Anne Rice and I swear, JUST as fascinating. They'd were so broke they'd turned off their phones to save money. He was told he'd sold Carrie by telegram. It changed his life.

Bekki Lynn said...

I've not read Ann Rice, but one of my sons loves her books.

Congratulations on celebrating your 27th anniversary. And doing it without kids in the house -- I've not accomplished that one yet.

Negative Reviews -- I figure if they have a legitimate beef, then it's worth a groan and a lesson learned. If not, well - there's the trash can and a giant chocolate bar in the freezer.

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary, Reg! You and your hubbby deserve this time and I hope you thoroughly enjoy each other! 27 years is amazing in today's world.

Fabulous blog, sweets! I love that story and dang it, I wish I'd have watched them. I love that show. They usually have the most interesting info on the stars.

It's always very inspiring to learn that these famous authors received rejections and bad reviews. That they overcame those, and still pressed on, still made history in the publishing world.

Wonderful topic!

jean hart stewart said...

Have loved Anne' books for years. And happy anniversary. You're just getting started...I still take a poor review very hard. Thank heaves I haven't had many. Jean


I’ve often wondered what the heck reviewers were thinking when they rejected a really good novel. The Anne Rice Rejection dilemma is legion, Heck! Alex Haley’s ROOTS was rejected something seventy or more times, from small underground presses to of course the large traditional publishers. John Grisham, the same thing (only quite as many rejections).

I understand that Nicholas Sparks’ NOTEBOOK was found the slush pile and was given to a weekend reading assistant, and she came in and ask what was the largest advance they ever gave anyone and when she was told, she advised her boss to give the author at LEAST that much. The rest of course is history.
We’ll keep on getting rejections, but we’ll keep on writing because we love it..

On another note, that was a sweet story about your marriage, so happy 27th Anniversary. Endurance and love that is what it is all about.


Minx Malone said...

This is inspiring. I'll have to remember that when I'm working through writer's block and facing my internal editor :)

Congrats on the anniversary!

Kelley Nyrae said...

Its so hard not to let it affect you. I try. I know its to be expected, but some times that doesn't help.