I went to Willamette Writers' monthly meeting here in Portland yesterday evening where we always have a speaker, and I ALWAYS learn something. Last night I mostly just had a great time watching a young fellow describe his experience of "winning the writer's equivalent of the lottery." (Quote by Cynthia Whitcomb who introduced him.) Daniel is the man who sold his first fiction novel -- when he had written 100 pages -- to Steven Spielberg. The finished book "Robopocalypse" opened in 13th place on the NY Times Best Seller list. He's been consulted all this past year by Dreamworks about the robots they're building, and rightfully so because he has a Ph.D in robotics.
See this isn't really a lottery. This is a smart guy writing about what he knows and what he has a great passion for. Everything he has written (non-fiction up to now) has been successful because he is a hard worker, clever, quick-witted, and passionate. And yes there was some luck involved, but not as much as you might think.
What did I learn this time? Don't hold back, use everything I have, this might be the only book I write so do my best, and follow every lead for a shot at publishing/agent/etc. Daniel has used everything he learned in academia to aid him in his writing career. Smart man.
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