29
Mar
09

Rachel’s Sunday Quickie – monkey business

One of the stories my mother used to tell me was the monkey with the magic banana. See, there’s a hungry monkey in a banana tree, and he knows that somewhere in this tree is a magic banana which, if he eats it, will cure his hunger. So he eats and eats and, on the tenth banana, he suddenly realizes that he’s not hungry any more.

 “Miraculous!” The monkey proclaims, holding the banana peel aloft. “The magic banana has cured my hunger! If only I’d know this was the one, I would have eaten it first and not wasted all those other bananas!”

Ah, parables, putting a finer point on human foibles since the dawn of time.

I wrote one full novel and dozens of half novels before I wrote the one that sold, and I have often grumbled that, if I’d known The Spirit Thief would be the one that made it, I would have written it first and gotten this whole writer gig underway years earlier. But, sadly, it doesn’t work that way. Just as there is no magic banana, there is no magic novel. Unless you are very very good and very very lucky, your first novel will not be the one that makes it. Maybe it’ll be your second, maybe your third, maybe your tenth. Only one thing is certain, whatever novel does make it will only have done so by standing on the shoulders of those that didn’t. Just make sure you’re not too beaten down to recognize the magic banana when it finally does land in your hands.

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