In case you haven’t seen it, J.K. Rowling’s speech to the graduating class at Harvard is quite inspiring. You can find it here. Her messages: We can learn from failure, and imagination helps us not only to write, but to make a difference.
The second is about her time working at Amnesty International. Her stories will bring tears to your eyes. But the first part is about succeeding and how we can do it. J.K. Rowling had the same difficulties as all of us when she was writing the first Harry Potter book: she was a single mother, trying to make ends meet and fitting in writing between a day job and everything else.
J.K. Rowling doesn’t say these words, but it’s in the same vein: Having a day job can be useful. A friend of mine who just published her memoir told me once that she got more writing done when she had a day job than when she didn’t. The desire to be doing something else, the desire to be successful enough at your chosen profession — writing — that you don’t have to do anything else pushes us forward to finish our novel or short story, polish it til it shines and send it out to agents and publishers, waiting for the day when we can be living in our fictional worlds full time. I know it drives me.
When you’re drained from work and don’t feel like working on your book, imagine the day when you’ll be able to give up your day job and know that the only way you’ll get there is if you spend that hour writing today, even if it is between putting the kids to bed and when the load of laundry is done. Use it.
The second part of my title, business, is for those who were dieing to get to Book Expo but didn’t make it: Podcasts of the BEA speeches. It’s always good to keep up with what’s going on in the industry, and if you can’t be there, this is the next best thing. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos says some pretty interesting things about the Kindle and the reception it’s getting.
Finally, for fans of J.K. Rowling’s Potter books, here’s something really scrumptuous: A bit of a prequel, which she says she’s NOT working on. Too bad. Click here for the website then click on Author’s Stories and J.K. Rowling. You can submit your own stories too. Thanks to Jon Bard of Children’s Book Insider for the link. I loved it.