Monday, December 20, 2010

Take a Chance, Take a Chance, Take a Take a Chance Chance...

 Who remembers the Abba song, Take a Chance on Me? I love that song, don't you? Well, for some reason, that song was running through my mind when I woke up this morning. And I don't know why, because it's been a while since I've watched Mama Mia. I know the lyrics have to do with taking a chance on love, but it wasn't the full song running through my head, only the title. Take a chance on me...take a chance on me...take-a-take-a-chance-chance...

The more I thought about it, I wondered if this is a subconscious thing about my writing. I wondered if maybe I'm silently begging for the publishing world to take a chance on me.

Seriously, lately I've been feeling a little discouraged. Like most unpublished authors, I dream of the day when an editor finally takes notice of my work. OK, who am I kidding? To fall in love with my work. Enough to take a chance on an unknown like me. I dream of what I would say to convince them I can do it! I'm easy to work with (I really am!), I am willing to make the changes they suggest, and I never miss a deadline. In fact, I work better under pressure (I really do!)

If you've followed my blog for a while, you may have seen my post about things writers can learn by watching American Idol. In all the seasons of this show, I don't think I've ever heard any of the contestants sing Take a Chance on Me. If they did, I can imagine the temptation to get right up in the face of the camera and plead for America to take a chance on them would be overpowering. Not to mention potentially embarrassing.

But, come on. We all want our big break.

Right now, I'll just have to work harder to make it easier for an editor to take a chance on me. Article credits are nice, but name recognition is nicer. I've got my website and this blog, I Facebook and Twitter, I attend writing conferences when I can. But I suppose the best thing I can do is improve my writing to the point where it's so good that an editor can't NOT take a chance on me. That he jumps at the opportunity to work with me. That she can't get the contract printed soon enough!

Yeah, well, it could happen.

For those of you who are unpublished (unknown little peons like me), what are you doing to increase the odds of getting editors to notice you? 
And if you are a published author, do you remember the moment when an editor first took a chance on you?


Anonymous said...

Doing all your doing is creating chances for a chance to be noticed! You go girl! I think it is more than chance that gets you standing higher on the bench. It's your passion shining through that gets noticed too.

Joanne Sher said...

LOTS of critiques, blogging, facebook, twitter, all that. Commenting on blogs. GREAT post.

Patty Wysong said...

oh yeah. I know that feeling! =] What am I doing? Putting in my time. Showing up. Putting one foot in front of the other... even when all I want to do is turn off my computer and forget it ever exited. LoL

Keep going, girl. God's time is THE BEST time of all!

Sally said...

Enjoy the journey.

BECKY said...

Hi Lynda! Oh, yeah, loved Abba!
As far as being you mean an entire manuscript, or a short story, etc? I don't write fiction, so I think it's really easier for someone like me to get published because of anthologies like Chicken Soup for the Soul. Those kinds of books are the best place to start, I think. And even if you think you "don't" write creative non-fiction, give it a try!

Lynda Schab said...


Yes, I've had many pieces published, both non-fiction and short stories. But I'm waiting for my big break with my manuscript. Keeping my fingers crossed that 2011 will be my year. :-)

BECKY said...

Oh, I didn't know! I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, too, then, for 2011 being your big year!