I was first published in the newspaper put out by School of The Art Institute of Chicago, where I was a student. I wince to read that story nowadays, but I published it with an odd photo I'd found in a junk shop, and at least I still like the picture. I had a few things in the school paper, and then I got published in a small literary magazine. I hoped I would one day get published in The New Yorker, but I never allowed myself to actually believe it. Getting published is one of those things that feels just as good as you'd hoped it would.
I'm a reader of Chinese literature, I like their films, but also: I've had great difficulty getting my work published in China; very little of it has been published there. The first two attempts to have all of my work published, for instance, were refused without any reason ever being given.
A review of seventy-four clinical trials of antidepressants, for example, found that thirty-seven of thirty-eight positive studies [that praised the drugs] were published. But of the thirty-six negative studies, thirty-three were either not published or published in a form that conveyed a positive outcome.
The very bulk of scientific publications is itself delusive. It is of very unequal value; a large proportion of it, possibly as much as three-quarters, does not deserve to be published at all, and is only published for economic considerations which have nothing to do with the real interests of science.
John Desmond Bernal
If this [the Mysterium cosmographicum] is published, others will perhaps make discoveries I might have reserved for myself. But we are all ephemeral creatures (and none more so than I). I have, therefore, for the Glory of God, who wants to be recognized from the book of Nature, that these things may be published as quickly as possible. The more others build on my work the happier I shall be.
As a scholar, you don't want to repeat yourself, ever. You're supposed to say it once, publish it, and then it's published, and you don't say it again. If someone comes and gives a scholarly paper about something they've already published, that's just terrible. As a university president, you have to say the same thing over and over and over.
Drew Gilpin Faust
There is a problem with writers. If what a writer wrote was published and sold many, many copies, the writer thought he was great. If what a writer wrote was published and sold a medium number of copies, the writer thought he was great. If what a writer wrote was published and sold very few copies, the writer thought he was great. If what the writer wrote never was published and he didn't have enough the money to publish it himself, then he thought he was truly great. The truth, however, was there was very little greatness. It was almost nonexistent, invisible. But you could be sure that the worst writers had the most confidence, the least self-doubt. Anyway, writers were to be avoided, and I tried to avoid them, but it was almost impossible. They hoped for some sort of brotherhood, some kind of togetherness. None of it had anything to do with writing, none of it helped at the typewriter.
Hollywood loves pre-validation. Even if someone has a property that was first published as a comic book that sold only 5,000 copies, for Hollywood, that is a stamp of approval. 'Oh, it was already published in another medium? Must be good!' They get assurance from knowing that someone else already took the risk.
David S. Goyer
All the authors who've ultimately published Louder Than Words memoirs have been very happy to be chosen and excited about the possibility of having their memoir published. Even though these books deal with serious, often painful, issues, in all cases the authors felt as though writing their story would be an empowering and healing experience.
I have a hardcore attitude: a 'self-published, ghost-written book' is wrong because the concept behind self publishing is that you have knowledge or emotions that you want to express. When people read a book-particularly a self-published one-they have the right to expect that it's the person's writing, not cleaned-up dictation or slapping a name on a book that someone else wrote.
I was writing at a really young age, but it took me a long time to be brave enough to become a published writer, or to try to become a published writer. It's a very public way to fail. And I was kind of scared, so I started out as a ghost writer, and I wrote for other series, like Disney 'Aladdin' and 'Sweet Valley' and books like that.
K. A. Applegate
When I wrote the first Betsy book, 'Undead and Unwed,' I had no idea, none, that it would be a career-defining, genre-defining book, the first of over a dozen in the series, the first of over 70 published books, the first on my road to the best-seller list, the first on my road to being published in 15 countries.
They believe that if they do get published, a wonderful new life is in store. It will turn out that deep down they are really valuable people and will have lots of money from now on and really cool people like Ethan Hawke will be dropping by all the time. But it's a lie. Being a published writer will make them long to be ONLY as mentally ill as they are now. Their current level of obsession and doubt and self-loathing will look like the good old days. Honest.
Way back in 1989, I got lucky with my first published story when it was selected for the Journey Prize anthology. Then I got lucky three more times. It is astounding to see how many writers published in the anthology have gone on to publish great story collections and novels. The anthology is a windfall for both writer and reader.
Kitty Kelley's method, already perfected in her unauthorised and unflattering biographies of Frank Sinatra and Nancy Reagan, is to write bestsellers that take what she describes as an 'unblinking look' at their subjects - which might, of course, mean that her eyes are permanently open or permanently closed... the result is a work so bad that Britons cannot realise how fortunate they are in being unable to buy it. The great mistake with this book is not that it has been published in Britain, but that it has actually been published anywhere else.
About a year after (my stories began being published), magazine editor George Scithers, suggested to me that since I was so new at being published, I must be very close to what I had to learn to move from fooling around with writing to actually producing professional stories. There are a lot of aspiring writers out there who would like to know just that. Write that book.SFWW-I is that book. It's the book I was looking for when I first started writing fiction.
Barry B. Longyear
People always try to make self-published authors feel insignificant. I have more respect for self-published authors, because I know the adversity they faced. They didn't just write a manuscript, query letter, and blam book deal. These authors had to do it the difficult way. There is no publisher, or agents, investing time, and money into making their book. Just the indie author's manuscript, own currency, and persistence.
Mary Sage Nguyen
In the usual way I submitted manuscripts to publishers. This was not so much a feeling that I should be published as a wish to escape the feared and hated drudgery of "normal" work. In my twenties some of my work for children was published by Macmillan. However, I was twenty-seven before my adult novel, The Birthgrave, was taken by DAW Books in the USA. This enabled me finally to stop doing stupid and soul-killing jobs, and start working day and night as a professional writer. It felt like a rescue from damnation, and still does.
As the Nazi regime developed over the years, the whole structure of decision-making was changed. At first there were laws. Then there were decrees implementing laws. Then a law was made saying, 'There shall be no laws.' Then there were orders and directives that were written down, but still published in ministerial gazettes. Then there was government by announcement; orders appeared in newspapers. Then there were the quiet orders, the orders that were not published, that were within the bureaucracy, that were oral. And finally, there were no orders at all. Everybody knew what he had to do.
The dirty little secret about comics is that the wall to getting published is actually not that high. You can publish your own comic. You can have your comic printed by the same people that print Marvel and DC and Image's comics for, I think, it's about $2,000 for a print run. So you can Kickstart it and get your own comic made. It depends on what is considered success to you. So if you need to be published by the Big Two to feel that you've made it, well, you should start working very hard.
Kelly Sue DeConnick
My last point about getting started as a writer: do something first, good or bad, successful or not, and write it up before approaching an editor. The best introduction to an editor is your own written work, published or not. I traveled across Siberia on my own money before ever approaching an editor; I wrote my first book, Siberian Dawn, without knowing a single editor, with no idea of how to get it published. I had to risk my life on the Congo before selling my first magazine story. If the rebel spirit dwells within you, you won't wait for an invitation, you'll invade and take no hostages.
Darwin's book, On the Origin of Species, was published in 1859. It is perhaps the most influential book that has ever been published, because it was read by scientist and non- scientist alike, and it aroused violent controversy. Religious people disliked it because it appeared to dispense with God; scientists liked it because it seemed to solve the most important problem in the universe-the existence of living matter. In fact, evolution became in a sense a scientific religion; almost all scientists have accepted it and many are prepared to 'bend' their observations to fit in with it.
When Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859, he exposed the world to a momentous discovery. For the first time in history, human beings were seen not as creatures of divine origin, but instead, as a product of nature, an animal like every other on the planet. Imagine yourself back in that amazing year. The day before Darwin's book was published, you wake up thinking yourself the image of God; the next morning you realize you have the face of a monkey. Not everybody immediately embraced this rude demotion from god to goat.
Writing for the sake of writing, writing that draws its credibility from its very existence, is a foreign idea to most Americans. As a culture, we want cash on the barrel head. We want writing to earn dollars and sense so that it makes sense to us. We have a conviction-which is naive and misplaced-that being published has to do with being 'good' while not being published has to do with being 'amateur.'... 'Did you write today?' 'Yes.' 'Then you're a writer today.' It would be lovely if being a writer were a permanent state that we could attain to. It's not, or if it is, the permanence comes posthumously. A page at a time, a day at a time, is the way we must live our writing lives. Credibility lies in the act of writing. That is where the dignity is. That is where the final 'credit' must come from.