I first heard of Heather Burch through Netgalley. I was a brand new blogger, going on Netgalley for the very first time. Halflings was up, I requested, and I got my first e-arc. I fell in love with the world Heather creates in these stories and I was so excited to hear that she was coming to Tennessee. So I drove a few hours to get to Nashville and eagerly awaited my chance to meet Heather. We had communicated by email a few times before this, and she took part in my birthday bash, so I was very excited to meet her.
I wasn’t disappointed. Heather taught me that no matter what I shouldn’t give up my dream. She spoke about going to conferences (this was before I went to SCBWI) and how much they helped her. It was a really great experience.
Someone mentioned something about querying agents. There were two other aspiring writers at the event so Heather (and the other authors) spent some time talking to us about our path so far. My path includes querying for the first time when I was 18. I had just finished a book that I loved and hadn’t yet learned what revisions were and probably shouldn’t have sent anything out. But I did. And I don’t regret it I sent out twenty queries, all rejections.
I love what Heather had to say about that.Until you’ve gotten 50 rejections on a single book you’re not trying. That really struck me and stays with me even today. It was a way of saying don’t ever give up, but to me it was also a way of saying it’s okay to fail. When she said that it told me that even though I got those rejections it wasn’t the ultimate failure, because the ultimate failure would be giving up because of those rejections.
Isn’t that great advice? Heather is one of the nicest authors I have met, and her faith and confidence in people is amazing. I may just be a really big fan of hers, but everyday I think of her great advice and her faith in me. That makes me feel good. I mentioned in the first post of this series about how I didn’t tell anyone for a long time that I was a writer because I didn’t want to be judged or feel inadequate. Heather is one of the people who really opened her arms to me and made me feel welcome in this world.
So through Heather I learned to never give up, even in the face of rejection, because by actually giving up my dream would be the ultimate horror.