Hello, I’m Jennifer Stevenson, and I write sexy funny fantasy-slash-romance novels. You can still get THE BRASS BED, THE VELVET CHAIR, and THE BEARSKIN RUG at bookstores everywhere. TRASH SEX MAGIC, a Small Beer Press book, is still available online. If you scrounge around you might find some of my short stories in science fiction and fantasy anthologies from the late eighties and the nineties.
I wanted to write because my whole family was bookish. From birth I was raised to be a writer. Someday. When they thought I was worthy. I did a lot of writing, mind you, but it took me forever to get around to submitting anything. So rule forty-two is, Submit something.
Well, no, rule forty-two is Write something. Oldest rule in the book.
So I wrote something and after a suitable ice age I submitted it and then I thought, well, it’s Wednesday, it can’t possibly get there until Monday, and then give ’em the rest of the week to open the box and read it, and of course they’ll want revisions, so no point in starting something new if I’m gonna get a revision letter any day now, right? After a year or two I would tire of waiting on the rejections for that manuscript. Rinse and repeat.
All you authors can stop laughing.
I had good intentions. Caution and perfectionism held me back. Lack of confidence led me to save ideas until their whiskers whitened. My dear departed mother used to say, “Do as I say, not as I do,” and I can think of no better advice to share.
So the watchword here will be, Write More.
In the interest of getting some pages done today, I close with some messages from my office walls:
“Dare to be bad.” –Bruce Worthel
“I can fix a bad page, but I can’t fix a blank page.” –Nora Roberts
“Never save bits. Put ’em in. Make a big mess.” –Gene Wolfe