Let’s slow the music down, break out that bottle of red, and dim the lights. It’s time to get a little sweet.
I just want to talk about why I love this business so much. When I was 18, and trying to decide what to do with my life, I had a conversation with my dad inside a McDonald’s (which I wrote about here). I told him I wanted to write. I figured my best option would be to get a degree in journalism and go into advertising. Then I could write things that rhyme! (What rhymes with diapers?)
But a professor told our class that the field of advertising is very competitive. That if you’re not willing to go out there and step on someone else to get where you’re going, then you won’t go far.
I literally quit my major that day. I don’t have a competitive bone in my body (I even apologize if I sneeze too loudly).
And what I’ve found out about the business of writing for children is that it is the most open, noncompetitive field out there. All the writers we’ve come across at conferences or on list serves or through this blog, have always, always been nothing but supportive. There seems to be a sense that there is room for everyone in this business. If you have a good story to tell, there’s always room.
And speaking of meeting great people through our blog, I’ve been corresponding with Natalie after we realized we both share the same awesome agent. She’s a talented writer living in Italy with her family for a few years and has a blog herself that details the life of an American living in a foreign country. It’s fantastic. Check her out!
Meanwhile, I’ll be sitting here sipping my red wine, listening to Enya, and thinking about how much I love this business. Sure advertising is great (why else would I actually go out and buy insurance from Geico?), but children’s literature is where it’s at.
Happily yours (and a little drunk from all this wine and really, really sick of Enya),