That quote is from a poem which appeared in an Irving Stone Book, The Agony and the Ecstasy. Or else it’s from The Passions of the Mind, but I think not.)
Writers Anonymous had an Indie-Publishing seminar the other night. Well attended by some earnest writers who wanted to Indie publish. Oh, the hope that shone in their eyes—that the panel would take their manuscripts and read them, edit them, publish them!
We were asked about markets and promotion.(But in some cases, the writer “didn’t do computers.”) We were physically in a building filled with reference materials. A Public Library. A library where most of the attendees meet regularly. (They told us so.) A library which has an excellent section on writing in all its aspects. (I know—I’ve used this library for years.) No one appeared inspired to pick up a copy of The Writer’s Handbook and read it. Not even to learn about markets. Well, you can lead a horse to water, but…you know the saying.
Folks, that’s how this writer learned to write, and to sell. (At that very library.) There’s no magic formula—there are dozens of them, often disclosed in articles in writing magazines and books. Be willing to read them. Learn at every opportunity, from the sources available to you. There are many, and most are free, while at the same time priceless.
Take your own good hand. Dare. You do not have to wait for a professional to tell you what to do. Because we will one and all tell you, freely and happily, but you must do the work of telling your tale and presenting it to your audience.
You. Not an agent. Not an editor. Not another writer who wrote something and published it. We all did what I’m recommending to you now. We wrote, we learned from one another, and we did our work as writers. (Writing is a trade without tricks.)
Be brave. Be joyful. Take your own good hand, and your own good brain, and write! You can learn how to present your work professionally, publish it, and promote it. Knowledge is Power! You need no one’s permission to learn—but no one can learn for you. That’s your work as a writer, and as a human being too!