What a powerful end to this interview in Sarah's response to the final question. I feel like I could cry with her. I've never tried submitting my novel anywhere, because it is still in-progress, but I know that part of the reason I'm taking so long is because I am absolutely DREADING feeling like Sarah described. Her answer was inspirational, too, though. I was actively writing for years and then just...slowed down to almost no writing, ever. I don't want to hold onto the regret this is already causing me to feel. I want to work harder to get these experiences with publishing a first book under my belt. Sarah recommended moving on in a project or with another project while waiting to hear back from publishers. I'll definitely keep that in mind. And, Sarah! My most recent Creative Writing professor has been published a multitude of times (two novels, preceded by short stories), but he made sure to describe to our class how lucky he was--most writers publish later. We're just not as mature at twenty-something as a professional author as we will grow into being. I think 4 1 is a perfectly early time to begin publishing a number of things and to continue that finally-culminated career path of Writer. Congratulations on your book, and on being considered for so many awards. Sounds like you'll win one soon.
I really like how you mention that reaching for some sort of connection is that hard part about all art, not just with writing but any other form of art. For me as a painter or illustrator, something can seem so crisp, clean, and full of meaning in my head, but translating that onto paper and hoping someone else gets that same feeling is so much more difficult. It's good to know that you strive for that same sort of ideal!
The way Sarah described the process of publishing is so heartbreaking and sad. Not just for her (though certainly for her), but for all writers out there. I have been in that seat as well. I had a story I loved and I submitted it to so many places that I lost track of where it was sent. It's just so much to keep up with. And I give a lot of credit to writers who can create a book of poetry like this. Most published poets I talk to tell me that the poems weren't written to go together. The hard part if finding the ones that fit. One poet described it as putting together the pieces of a puzzle. Some pieces look like they should fit, but they are just a little off. It's hard work. Congrats to Sarah for her success!
This was really insightful - it hit a lot of truth-nerves for me
My truth nerve was hit by this: "New writers (all writers, really) have something to say and they want to get that across but a good writer is willing to be open to the process and allow things to change as you write."
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