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GRAPEMO 2014 DAY 3: Gearing Up For Teasers

Tomorrow with be our first TEASER day! Please try to get these to me by midnight tonight for posting tomorrow. I generally have them up by noon EST.

Quick reminders:

Include the TITLE of the piece.
Limit them to 300 words, give or take.
One teaser per participant.
These will not be edited or proof-read, so be sure it's your best work.
Comments are welcome--NOT critiques.

The reason I encourage people to post TEASERS is simple: To get writers used to having others read their work.

People who don't write may find this strange. Why wouldn't a writer want other people to read what they're writing? After all, isn't that why writers...well...write? Of course. And what huge egos we must have! To imagine that we can not only write something that others will want to read, but actually pay money for the privilege of doing so.


The truth is, writers are some of the most insecure creatures on earth. This insecurity is one of the reasons we write in the first place. We express in words what we can't express face to face. Some of us are introverted, often to a fault. For every writer who is as comfortable in front of a microphone as he is behind a keyboard, there are a thousand others who would rather suck on a blow torch than get up in front of a roomful of people, even our most adoring fans.

This "social anxiety" continues when it's time to share our writing with others, whether it's friends and family, our first beta readers, or agents and editors. It continues on when our stories are published, when we're then at the mercy of critics and the general public.

Criticism stings. Rejection hurts. It's frustrating. Disheartening. Many writers give up after two or three rejections. I wonder how many of these writers would've have succeeded if they'd only listened to THE GODFATHER--

 photo godfather.jpg
"It's not personal. It's just business."

--and kept trying, i.e. done their best to make their writing their BEST.

The writers with the huge egos--the ones who are so very eager to share their work that they foist various versions off on total strangers, post lengthy, poorly edited excepts of their work on blogs and message boards and anywhere else they can sneak them in, and send out hideous first drafts willy-nilly to random agents and editors (then bitch about their rejections)--are the ones desperately in need of some brutal, honest feedback. The rest of us welcome it. Yes, we might whimper and sob, maybe hit the bottle, perhaps take to our beds for a week or more (just kidding--it's never a full week) but in the end we know it'll make us a better writer.

The first step, though, is to put our writing out there--and yes, it's a difficult step for many.

 photo 2014insecurewriter.jpg

GRAPEMO--one of the safest place to start. xox


Jeannine Garsee

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