Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Putting the joy back into your writing

Hello and welcome to part II of my four part series on The Leagues of Utah Writers Roundup. As you can guess by the title we are going to be talking about finding the happy in your writing again.

Sarah Fitzgerald taught the class with that title and we also heard a very inspirational speech from Rudy Ruettiger.

If you've never seen the movie Rudy then you won't know who he is. So I'm going to give a quick recap of his younger life.

This is a picture of the actor that played him (also known as Sam Wise Gamgee)

This ---
is the real guy. 

Anyway, Rudy had a dream. He wanted to play football for Notre Dame, only he wasn't cut out for it. He was short, thin, and not athletic enough. Did that stop him? Not in the least. After a lot of hard work and never-ending persistence, he got his chance.

He never gave up. His football story is amazing in itself, but he didn't quit dreaming. He got the idea in his head that his story should be made into a film. He didn't think he could write a script, he had zero connections in Hollywood, and with the way the movie industry works, he had a next to nothing chance of every seeing his story on the big screen.

Did that stop him? No. He went to Hollywood, he knocked on doors until he made the connections. The producer that eventually took the deal didn't even show up at the lunch date he promised to be at. Rudy had to find him!

Now, he's written a book about his life's story and speaks all over the country inspiring as he goes. 

One powerful lesson he taught us is that if you want something, you have to stand up and get it. He held up a copy of his book and asked who wanted it. We all raised our hands, but it wasn't until someone actually stood up to claim it that he gave it away. 

No one is going to published if they don't put in the work in first.

Switching Gears to Sarah Fitzgerald, who wrote this awesome book - 

Sometimes it feels like we have worked our butts off and what do we have to show for it? But really, are we writing becasue we want to be bestseller? If that is the only reason you write than you can count on disappointment.

I'm not saying you can't dream about it, but it shouldn't be your reason for writing. She talked about, back talk in our heads (one of my biggest problems) It's not good enough, no one's going to love it, I am failure before I have even tried.

But the fact is, you are not going to die if someone doesn't like your book. It doesn't mean that is end of the road or even the last book you will ever write. It only means that you have given in to the demon on your shoulder.

Write for you, and someday you will find your place in the writing world.


Hektor Karl said...

Good advice.

Rudy came to speak at my high school, though I didn't attend. I did like the movie when I was kid, though.

David P. King said...

I love your empowering attitude. That's what this business is (or ought to be) about. Writing for the love of writing. If you're writing for money, awards, and fame, maybe your not thinking about writing as much as you should be.

Great post! :)

Joanne said...

I'd like to think we can combine the two lessons ... Write for you, and then stand up and take that place in the writing world, with confidence and assurance and drive :)

Abby Fowers said...

I love it! It's so true. It was so fun to have RUDY there to talk. I have loved that movie forever, so it was great to hear him in person. And it's true with our writing. We can't give up. We've got to keep going for it no matter what.

Bethany C. said...

Rudy's an all-time favorite movie. And YEA! Sean Astin--after playing a tiny football player, he was promoted to a hobbit in Lord of the Rings. BOOYA!

Great post, Ms. Anniston. The only way we're sure to fail is if we give up.

elizabethreinhardt said...

Recently someone didn't like my book! Well, she liked it...she just didn't fall in love. It does hurt a little. But I swear, you DO NOT die. And many people do come out of everywhere imaginable and support you and your work! It's easy to be a critic; it's scary to put your work out there and risk criticism!

Kelly L said...

I've been working on a book for a long time -and it's my way of getting my thoughts to paper.. Love love love Rudy...
I've Become My Mother

Sarah Pearson said...

That's my favourite go-to mantra - 'If nobody dies or goes to prison then it's all good' :-)

Jenny S. Morris said...

This is awesome. I loved that movie. I am really try hard, to just write for me. To enjoy it. I did a few short stories this week, that I jumped into with that attitude and I had fun.

Great post!

Aubrie said...

Inspiring post! Good thing I'm not going to die if someone doesn't like my book, because I've met a few people who don't like it, and I'm still alive! :)

Deana said...

These are serious words to live by! What a cool talk you got to listen to. I loved that movie Rudy. That is really neat to hear what he went through to get the movie out.

Peggy Eddleman said...

Awww. This post was fifty kinds of inspiring. Awesome!

cherie said...

Yay, Rudy! Yep, don't give up. Do what you love. Write, write, write away. ;)

Alexis Bass Writes said...

I'm in the middle of revisions so this post was EXACTLY what I needed! Well said!

Elle Strauss said...

Great pep talk. So true how we want everyone to love our writing, but that doesn't happen with any other art form. We don't all like the same kind of music or design our homes in the same way. This is a good thing. Hard to embrace when it's our art that's not liked, though!

Nisa said...

It sounds like it was an awesome experience. I need to sweep out that back talk, too. I think the number one thing that scares me is how I'll handle a bad review. :S