If You Can Make it Here

518OzNZpbXL._AA240_.jpgIf I had a byline for every time a person in Portland told me, with that certain glee and gleam in his eye, that I couldn’t make it in Portland as a writer… I’ve heard this little nugget over and over and still I march on, networking my little heart out, writing until midnight on deadline, working on my books, pitching and networking more.

Maybe because I am a stupid woman, I continue working my ass off to make it here as a writer. Or maybe because people have told me variations on this jewel since I graduated from high school and I don’t know any different than to prove them wrong. I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know that there are a few people in this town making it as a writer. Ariel Gore, aka Hip Mama, is one. She has an amazing, inspiring interview in Bookslut’s Magazine this month. Here’s the link. Substitute writer for artist, or knitter or software designer and you have a pretty good idea of what it takes to pursue your goals. It’s a scary road, especially when people take such joy in telling you what a fool you are to give it a go. But a road worth traveling. You only live once, right?

Check out Ariel Gore’s new book, How to Become a Famous Writer Before You’re Dead. Check out her interview on Bookslut, and while you’re there, you might take a look-see at the Culinaria Column too. Before you send me hate mail about my cracking on Portland’s hemp-y composting ways, know that like a boy pulling on a girl’s pigtails in school, I only do it because I want to see up your dress.

5 Comments so far

  1. McAngryPants (unregistered) on February 8th, 2008 @ 8:25 pm

    You HAVE to succeed and become famous! Otherwise the only other famous person I know will still be Donny Osmond (fact) and/or getting the band The Housemartins high. Other than perhaps Brewcaster becoming INfamous…you’re my only hope!

  2. Cathy (unregistered) on February 9th, 2008 @ 7:29 am

    You just show me those people who told you you can’t do it. I’ll beat ’em up for you. What utter codswallop! OF COURSE YOU CAN DO IT. YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU WANT. IT IS TRUE. SAY IT WITH ME: I CAN DO IT.
    Here’s my love coming atcha.

  3. brewcaster (unregistered) on February 9th, 2008 @ 10:00 am

    Pants, I am humbly honored.

  4. Matt Davis (unregistered) on February 10th, 2008 @ 10:30 am

    The 6 habits of highly effective writers:

    1.Work hard.
    2.Work hard.
    3.Work hard.
    4.Work hard.
    5.Work hard.
    6.Work hard.

    The only difference between a dick writer and a real writer, in my view, is that the dick writer will spend an hour in the pub telling you about what he’s writing. The writer is stuck in his or her office at home, writing it.

    Also, it’s important to learn to ask a real question, such as:

    "Are you lying to me?"
    "What’s your real agenda, here?"

    Not just:

    "Tell me all about yourself and why you’re great?"

  5. Kai Jones (unregistered) on February 11th, 2008 @ 3:06 pm

    I know lots of successful local writers. The Portland metro area is home to dozens of successful science fiction and fantasy writers. Very few of them live entirely off their writing.

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