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  • Writer's pictureTERRY ANN MARSH

From Premise to Published: GO!

Well…we’ve done it! We started out on a little journey together and we have come to the end - or at least we have come to the end of the first leg of the trip. If this were the Boston Marathon, I’d say we are almost to the end of mile one!

That’s part of the beauty of writing, there is always so much more to do and to learn. And truthfully, what works for one may not work for another and what sold like gangbusters five years ago wouldn’t even get a nod today. Writing is a very fluid art form.

I’d like to take a moment to give you a little personal history.

I am a singer. I’ve been singing since I was a kid. I sang in the junior choir in a little old Methodist church full of blue-haired ladies. Once, after a particularly rousing hymn, where I gave it my all, one of the boys in the choir said his dad asked him what my name was. Fresh with the glow of showmanship, I waited for him to tell me how good his dad said I was.

“Boy, is she loud!”

Yes, I was loud - still am! I was also determined. I kept singing. And singing. I cut my teeth on Barbra Streisand’s Funny Girl album. I went big - and then I went bigger. Any criticism, any instruction, any advice - I gulped it down. I was never professionally trained, but I had a couple of good choir directors and I listened to what they had to say. I wanted to sing!

By the time I was 35, I had my own little show where I sang in just about every retirement community and senior center in Maryland. I did the music I loved - Big Band classics, show tunes, ballads, and blues for about 25 years. Somewhere along the way, I wrote a kid’s program and did that as well. With a bit of talent and lots of determination, I had a nice part-time gig that also gave me plenty of time to be with my kids. Perfect!

I opened my eyes, opened my ears, and asked everyone for advice. I tried this and I tried that. If it didn’t work, I tried something else. The old adage proved very true - where there’s a will, there’s a way!

So, my friend, if you want to write, then write! Keep writing even if someone tells you not to or tells you you're not good enough or that they don’t like what you have to say. Don’t give up. Try harder. Figure out where you went wrong and try again.

And just for funsies, and so you’ll know you’re not alone - look up “authors who got rejected.” You’ll love it!

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