Ramblings: Submission rejections and random musings

I didn't wake up in the best of moods this morning. There really shouldn't be a reason for me to be in a bad mood today, I slept over 7 hours, the weather is gorgeous and summery and I really don't have anything to be stressed out about. I just have this terrible habit of checking my email as soon as I wake up and I got a rejection email from some publication I had sent a short story to. Not my first and won't be my last either, but it's just disheartening. It's disheartening that they don't give you any real feedback either, so you don't know if they didn't want your story because they thought it sucked, or just because they didn't think it would fit in with their publication. I suppose it's the eternal dilemma of being a writer, you have to get a thousand rejections before you get one letter accepting your work. It's not like I want to become a world famous author, be published everywhere and earn millions from what I do (although in some type of dream world that would be nice). I just want to be able to know that I'm not doing all this for nothing.
Then comes the other question of where and when I should submit content... I find specific places online and just submit work, but I have no idea really what they want. There are so many amazing writers out there, how can you find your own place among them, and get published regularly? What on earth should I be sending out? Should I just concentrate on my novel and finish that off, and stop focusing on short stories and articles? Should I just set up my own online web fiction site? What type of genre do I fall under? Am I just not really that talented at this?
Blah. It's all quite discouraging really. I can't give up though, writing makes me happy, and if I don't fit in somewhere, I am sure there will be other places where my style does fit in. I have so much content that is piled up on my desk, going back to my early teens. Stories, poems, songs, random pages of words, catharsis, imagination, reality, chapters that should go towards a novel, real life, fake life etc etc etc.

On a more positive note, I sent the 123 pages that I have written towards my novel over to my brother and he sent me some very constructive and mainly positive feedback which is exactly what I need. Have a I ever mentioned before how scared I am of other people (especially those I know) reading what I write? That's why I write on here, because it's a way of getting over that fear. And it's also one place where I feel that I can sometimes be really self-centered and ramble on about my thoughts, feelings and whatever happens to be going on in my head. Once I am done and have posted whatever I needed to post I feel better about everything. I don't feel like bothering my friends and family with a lot of stuff, so why not just post it on the internet so I can bother the world with it? Genius.

The other day I started writing a story from the eyes of one of my friends. It was going to be really sarcastic and funny but ended up being quite sad and truthful. I felt strange after I had finished it, like I was actually telling a story that wasn't mine to tell, and that I was using someone else's life as fodder for my own writing. Is that unfair? Or is that just life, as some of my other friends told me when I asked them if it was mean of me to do that? I probably need to stop thinking about it so much and just get on with it. I have a great idea for a novella about a few experiences another one of my friends has had, and she wants me to do it. I'm writing about my own experiences and life in my novel, so it's quite refreshing to write about someone else. Once I also get this novel done I think I am just going to let it sit for a while and work on another idea for a book that I had a few months ago. I just need to get this one out and done, as I have been wanting to do this for so many years now...

Ahhhhh... OK. I'm going to stop procrastinating as usual and go outside, smoke a cigarette, get my thoughts together and start looking for other places to submit my work. No point in complaining about it anymore than I already have today.


Blogs that inspire me...

I've been inspired to do a lot today (run, cooking, shopping, cleaning, finishing my book), but not inspired to write much. And while I am taking a few minutes to sit down, relax and drink a cup of coffee I thought it would be the perfect moment to talk about the blogs that I find the most inspiring out there today... Have a look, you may find something you like too...
In no particular order:

Fresh Paint NYC
Great pictures of some wonderful street art in NYC, and other cities and countries.

Sighs and Whispers
Laura has amazing style and her blog is dreamworthy to say the least.

Fucking Nostalgic
My favourite music blog out of all them out there, hand down. Great writing, great music, great lay-out.

Systems of Romance
For those of you who like the more obscure sides of music. There are some really cool, rare downloads on this blog.

I Rock I Roll
Nora has this ability to know what is going to be hot before it is anywhere near it. And she's a lovely person too.

Texas in Africa
EXTREMELY smart and well-written blog on African politcs, conflict, social politics... I would recommend this to everyone. (Thanks to Meg for recommending it to me!)

Save Darfur
Because everyone should at least make themselves aware.

Dust Magic
Because Charlie is special and her blog makes me feel like I am floating in space.

Flowers and Cream

Thurston. Need I say more?

Generation Old Time Radio

Takes me back in time.

It's Not Just Pie In The Sky

Read all these posts on how Henry Rollins inspired/helped different people all over the world. Heartbreaking and inspiring.

I love this - a thank you note every day. Some of them will make you fall off your chair laughing.

Alison's (new) Blog

Beautiful pictures...

Writers are rockstars too!

Stephanie (Kuehnert) was in town for some writer/book-related events this week and I was able to prise myself away from work for a couple of hours to stop by to see her talk and do a short reading on a panel at Book of Wonders on West 18th St. Someone in the audience asked her why she mixed so much music into her writing and her answer (paraphrased as I cannot remember the exact words) was "I always wanted to be a rockstar, and because I don't have any musical talents, I write about how music inspires me instead". I feel the same way. Music and Literature are my safe havens, the two main art forms that inspire me, render me speechless, help me evolve and help me move on. In my opinion Stephanie is as much a rockstar as PJ Harvey, as although PJ adds music to her words, Stephanie's words just move along with the music in my head.
And a book I love signed personally by the author is just as precious to me as an album signed by one of my favourite musicians.

My signed copy of "I Wanna Be Your Joey Ramone" by Stephanie Kuehnert (signed during our trip to Seattle in April 2009):

Melissa Walker was also on the panel, and signed my copy of "Lovestruck Summer":

This book made me want to move to Austin...