Monday, May 17, 2010

JK Rowling On Failure

I graduated from the Harvard Extension School the year JK Rowling gave this speech at Harvard's Commencement. I loved it then, and I love it now.

I hope these quotes from her speech give comfort to anyone going through a tough time (and, if you're not now, just save them for the next time one hits like a tornado)

*Some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all. In which case, you have failed by default.

*You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift.

*Given a time turner, I would tell my 21-year-old self that personal happiness lies in knowing that life is not a checklist of acquisitions or achievements. Your qualifications, your CV, are not your life, though you will meet many people...who confuse the two.

*Life is difficult and complicated and beyond anyone's total control and the humility to know that will enable you to survive its vicissitudes.

And for anyone looking for inspiration to get your butt in the chair, and your pen on the page:

* the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared. Best Blogger Tips

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"News that will edge your fiction-writing friends closer to suicidal despair"

I love for it's snarky, edgy coverage of everything from current events to books to the latest in bad T.V.

This article about Tyra Banks' new novel will make you laugh through the tears you shed about how hard you have to work to get anything published while famous people just make a call, it seems, and get a book deal.

The opening line had be laugh/crying:

In the latest "news that will edge your fiction-writing friends closer to suicidal despair," television host, model, producer and Fake Hair Academy headmistress Tyra Banks has announced that she is penning a series of fantasy novels for her own Random House imprint, Bankable Books. To paraphrase Ms. Banks herself: Stephenie Meyer, kiss her fat ass. Best Blogger Tips

Thursday, May 06, 2010

And I Quote

I love this quote about writing a novel, from a Powell's Bookstore interview with Brady Udall:

When you read a book, and it's good and you love it and you're just amazed by it, it feels like everything was with intent. It seems like the writer had this amazing ability. I think people who aren't writers don't understand this, and writers don't really advertise this very much. But most of it's just bumbling around and making mistakes. You happen on something, and think, "Oh, this works. Okay." Then you throw something else out, and it's just this chaos that eventually you wrestle into order. Most of it's what I would call mistakes or errors of judgment that turn out well somehow. When I look back, even when I was close to finishing the book, I thought I could never make this work. But somehow I found a way.

Man, that gives me hope! Best Blogger Tips

Monday, May 03, 2010

Birth Announcement

The latest edition to the Junge Literary Family is here!

My baby, a short story named Cartes Postales, came into the world via the New Plains Review a few days ago, and arrived in my loving arms today. After months and months of nurturing her, I'm so proud to see her in print and introduce her to the world.

(You can't read my story online, but if you order a copy of the journal, I'll gladly autograph it for you! If you don't live near the Boston area, message me at writerbug2006 AT yahoo DOT com to coordinate.) Best Blogger Tips