Showing posts with label guest blogger. Show all posts
Showing posts with label guest blogger. Show all posts

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Q is for Querying #AtoZChallenge

#AtoZChallenge 2023 letter Q The proverb is Nana korobi, ya oki which means Fall down seven times, stand up eight.

I’m Brandy, a writer of YA fantasy, thrillers and adult fantasy. And the Japanese proverb above encompasses my own personal definition of resilience: the ability to stand up after being knocked down, and a willingness to put yourself in a position to face the same circumstances, even when you know you might get knocked down again. 

Never have I found this more true than with the experience of querying.

question marks

For the writers out there you may associate querying with one of the steps on the path to traditional publishing. This is certainly what I think of. But I think that we all query way more than we realize.
love keyboard

A typical job search parallels querying very closely,
As does using dating apps,
Or, hoping for engagement with blog posts.

In all of these we are selling ourselves, our work, our experience and backgrounds, our interests, packaging them into tidy bundles that we hope will appeal.

And when rejection hits- it hurts.
Batman Robin Grey's Anatomy pick me quote passed

A lot. 

This is where resilience comes in. 

For me resiliency in querying is based on two factors:
Accepting rejection without internalizing it.  My work is being rejected. But others' opinions on my work is not a reflection of my personal worth.
Reminding myself if a door closes, it probably wasn’t the door for me. I don’t want to work with an agent or publisher who doesn’t love my work. 

I think these translate well to other avenues of querying whether it’s in your work or personal life.

When you’re resilient you have the ability to accept rejection, despite how personal it feels, and continue to put yourselves out there.

If you’re writing that means continuing to query your book, or the next book.
If you’re applying to jobs that means continuing to search for a role you want and not settling for the first opening that says yes.
If you’re searching for connection that means continuing to look.
And if you’re putting yourself out there with blog posts, it means taking on challenges like A to Z, to find the right audience and to make connections with other bloggers.

Sure, I fall down a lot, but I always get back up.

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Thursday, April 21, 2022

#AtoZChallenge A Reverie

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The team's theme of the April Blogging from A to Z Challenge this year is:

 Hi A to Zers! Here we are at the letter R already! How is your challenge going?

When I was allowed the opportunity to write this guest blog I went into a reverie (or daydream) about reality and reflections. As an amateur photographer I enjoy finding interesting reflections, whether they are in puddles, lakes, flowing water or the calm sea. The reflections are an optical illusion. They are often very beautiful, but even the smallest child soon realises that they can’t be touched. They have no solidity. They are not real in that sense.

Another sort of reflection is thought. I am not a philosopher and will leave it to those better qualified than myself to answer the question, ‘Are thoughts real?’

My reverie caused me to reflect on previous A to Z Challenges. This is the 10th year I have participated. The first year I was rather new to blogging. My first blog was set up for a particular purpose. I found writing to a formula somewhat limiting, so started a second blog, Sue’s Trifles, with the idea of taking part in writing challenges. It was a few days before the start of the Blogging from A to Z in April Challenge, as I discovered by doing a search for ‘challenge’. I signed up and wrote my posts mostly on the day they were due.

One year I also did the challenge on my third blog, Sue’s words and pictures, which is where I post some of the photos I take. Sue’s words and pictures began in 2015 after a particularly enjoyable day out with hubby and my new smart-phone.

Preparing twenty eight posts (including the theme reveal and reflections posts) on one blog is time-consuming. Double that and advance preparation is essential. I recollect that after the first year I began to prepare and schedule my posts in advance. Sometimes I’d be away from home for a week during April.

This year I almost didn’t take part. I am trying to write a memoir of my childhood in the suburbs of south London. It will contrast life in the densely populated south with a village in Lancashire where I was taken for an annual visit to my grandparents. Other parts of the country will also feature. The differences between the north and south of England are topical as the UK government talks about ‘levelling up’.

It was Dave, who wrote the fascinating post about all the twos, who persuaded me to take part again this year. For a writer one person wishing to read their output is a spur. My dream is that many of you will wish to read what I have already written and what I write in the future.

This is my second guest post on this blog. My first is now somewhat superseded by changes in technology.

The theme of dreams and duality encompasses (I hope) reality and reflections. Perhaps memories of other times and places also have a relevance to the theme. 

I have rambled long enough. Reflections are important in the A to Z Challenge. Bloggers are invited to reflect on their experience of taking part. If you are intending to publish a Reflections post it is not too early to gather your thoughts about comments you have received and blogs you have visited as part of the challenge.

Writer bio

Susan always wanted to be a writer.  In 2012 she revived her interest in writing with a project to collect the kinds of sayings, which were much used in her childhood.

Blogging was intended as a way of improving writing skills, but has become an interest in its own right.  Susan experiments with factual writing, fiction, humour and poetry.  She does not yet have a book to her name. Her interests include words, languages, music, knitting and crochet.  She has experience of the world of work, being a stay-at-home mum and an empty-nester.   She is active in her local community and Church, where she sings alto in the choir. She is a member of the Association of Christian Writers. She and her husband live in the north of England. 

Follow her on Twitter @suesconsideredt

Reflections will open on May 2. Will you write a post for that?

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