Sunday, March 13, 2011

I'm A Baker Too!

Thanks to the awesome Three Wicked Writers plus Two for allowing me to blog here today! And a special wave to Regina, who's a sweetheart and an amazing writer, and Natalie, who's a design goddess beyond compare and a wonderful author too! :)

Okay, the title of this blog post is a lie. I don't bake. Well, unless it's one of those premade cookie kits. But I think writing is a lot like baking a cake. You throw in a bunch of ingredients - characters, plot, theme - and you mix them up. Then you check to make sure your ingredients are fully combined (aka revisions.) Finally you try to sell your cake.

Some cakes are perfect. Nicely frosted, perfectly designed. Taste yummy too. Those cakes fly off the shelves, assuming the right buyer wanders past your window. Other cakes are a bit lumpier. The glaze might have clumped in some spots and maybe your batter wasn't mixed as well as it could have been. Maybe someone buys that cake too, but you always have that little wonder when they'll write you a note and tell you it was the worst cake they ever ate.

And then...there are the stinkbomb cakes. You made this cake like all the other cakes but for some reason this one wasn't as good. You suspect something may be wrong, but you put it in the window with all the others. And no one wants it.

Does this mean you can't bake? That this is it and you're done? Hang up your apron and forget about it? No. It means this particular cake didn't work. You might've been emotionally upset that day, week, month. Your personal life has a ton to do with your creative output, and if you think otherwise, test it and see. Bakers - and writers - don't just slot widgets into holes. We create. That doesn't mean every creation will rock. It just doesn't. But we need to have faith in ourselves that we can self-correct and get back on track.

I see writers doubting themselves all the time when they get rejected. I've done it too. But I try to keep it in perspective. If I keep trying and keep believing in myself and what I'm capable of producing, soon enough that failed cake will be a distant memory.

And no, getting a rejection does not mean you suck as a writer. One project didn't work for one editor at one house. It may work for a whole bunch of other editors. Don't give up!

Writers, how do you deal with rejections? Do they lay you low or do you have a strategy for handling them? And for readers, is there something in your life that you love to do and you've had to search out ways to move beyond fear of possible rejection? (Even dating counts...heck, those waters can be the most shark-infested of all!)

Before I go, I wanted to mention my latest Ellora's Cave release, Reveal Me. It's the first in my brand new Unveiled series about Kink, a voyeurism club, and the people who frequent it. Provoke Me, book 2, was recently contracted. Since there was no neat segue between my topic and voyeurism, I'll just add a link and let you check it out for yourself if you're so inclined!

Visit Cari at


Anny Cook said...

My solution? Keep writing. Keep writing. Keep writing. Excellent post, Cari!

Harlie Williams said...

Cari, you could never suck! Love it that you are over here today. I'm actually make cookies today.

Harlie Williams said...

Hi Reg, Tess, Anne, Madison and Natalie!

Cari Quinn said...

Thanks so much for having me here today!

And thanks Anny and Harlie Reader...keeping writing is the only solution! And cookies are always good. :)

Natalie Dae said...

Hiya, Cari love! Great post. Loved the window mention.

How do I cope with rejection? I was thinking about that today while cleaning. These days, to put it bluntly, I just don't give a... I thought about how it used to make me feel useless, like my book was a load of rubbish. Now? It's a shrug attitude. It wasn't right for that publisher, so what? Kinda move on or file the book to revise some other time, and start a new one, outlook. I'm very glad I'm past the stage of it hurting.


Natalie Dae said...

Hiya Harlie!


Jen B. said...

Please, I have fear of rejection for everything I try. I just figure, I learn something with everything new I try so it's all good. Even if you do feel raw when it goes wrong!

Wendy A said...

I haven't read your books yet but i checked out your web page and your books sound good so i will have to read them and yes i found that if you keep trying you can do anything.

Janice Seagraves said...

Keep going, Cari, and never give up!