If Only…

Sometimes I think I’d be better off not reading stories like this one:

Model and television host Tyra Banks has followed a new celebrity trend, landing a three-book deal with Delacorte Press for a YA fantasy series entitled Modelland.

“In a concept that marries Top Model and Harry Potter, Modelland centers on a teen who manages to get into an exclusive academy for ‘Intoxibel las’ — who are the most exceptional models known to humankind and harbor unknown powers. Once there, she finds herself competing to be accepted as part of that world.” (from GalleyCat)

If only I was famous. If only I had those contacts. If only…

At least my critique buddy Kim knew how to put it in perspective.

I shouldn’t think about her shoes, closets, or contracts. That’s her gig, not mine. To me, this writing thing is a journey. My journey. It’s up to me to grow my skills, cultivate my talents, and walk the path. I listen to the wise women along the way (looking at you all), try to enjoy the sun on my face, keep the wind to my back, and keep moving.

And that’s why I’m thankful every day for the women in my critique group!

29 thoughts on “If Only…

  1. A cross between Top Model and Harry Potter? JK Rowling is cringing right now that her book is in the blurb for Tyra's…

    Do you think many celebrities have ghost authors that help with the writing too?

  2. I often think of writing as making a quilt or weaving a tapestry, looking around and using the bits and pieces that I find in my own life and environment. (Mine is not Tara Banks, that's for sure!)

    We all live different lives with different bits and pieces to use, and we can pick and choose what we like — the good stuff, the bad stuff, the unusual stuff, the heart-breaking stuff.

    As writers and creative persons it's essential to look around with an open mind and “new” eyes to see the jewels we take for granted in our own surroundings.

    Then, when we weave or patch together our life, our books, our artwork in patterns of our own choosing, we end up with unique treasures.

    Enough already. I haven't even had my coffee yet!

  3. SERIOUSLY???!!!! She's publishing a three-book YA series. Ugh. Something about that just turns me off, but well, I get annoyed about a lot of things lately, hah.

    Your friend is right – follow your own journey and love it! The last journey you want to follow is Tyra Banks. I hope!

  4. I think that sounds like a terrible book. Hopefully the focus isn't on beauty… and only beauty. Maybe we'll be pleasantly surprised. I probably won't read it to find out though.

  5. These are so hard. I tell myself (over and over and over) that I don't KNOW she isn't a good or great writer and that while the connections have helped, maybe she's also written a winner and yay for her. Or this is what I TRY to tell myself!

    I love Jamie Lee Curtis' picture books that I've read, so… πŸ™‚

  6. When we get there, it's all that much sweeter having had to work for it. I'd rather have someone buy my book on merit, than for a popularity contested name. (Hugs)Indigo

  7. Big names sell, Or, at least they have an easier time finding their way onto the shelves …

    I'm wondering if her stories will include people/situations from her talk show. Maybe they'll sue. πŸ˜‰

    Stuff like this bugs me too. Like Madonna doing an erotica video and then popping out a few kids and deciding to write picture books.

    I get the last laugh though — I DON'T BUY THEM! So there. Take that, Madonna, Tyra, Tori, etc …

  8. Oh, wow *blush blush* thanks for quoting me, Sherrie.

    You made my whole day!

    You keep writing, Sherrie. Your stories are beautiful and fun and the kids will love them. Guaranteed.

  9. Jamie: I'm so glad to have her around πŸ™‚

    Kelly: You're probably right about JK cringing. But I'll bet it's not the first (or the last) time she's been used for comparison!

    Candy: Sorry! I know, it totally bummed me out too. But don't lose heart. You're a writer. And some day your name will be on the cover of a book you REALLY wrote πŸ™‚

    Footloose: I like the idea of weaving everything together to make a unique treasure. Now if only we all had 3-book deals patched together for our writing!

    Glam: Yeah. I seriously wanted to CRY when I saw that since I had just received another rejection for the book that I actually wrote and rewrote myself. But I'm glad Kim reminded me that the journey is just as important as the book and her journey isn't mine. All the same…!

    Laura: Doesn't sound like something I'll be reading either πŸ™‚

    Becky: Um, yeah, maybe she IS a fabulous writer. But then again, so are we!

    Indigo: You are such a smart woman. The harder you work, the sweeter the victory!

    JEM: I FEEL your pain!!

    Piedmont: Yeah, the concept sounds pretty off the wall. But, like my friend said, I'm on a different journey and when I've got a book on the shelves that I actually WROTE, it'll be all the sweeter!

    Kim: You're a brilliant woman! Thank you!

    Terry: Isn't she though?! So glad she's there to help me see straight πŸ™‚

  10. Oh my stars! You would think Tyra has enough to do. But I'm thinking like Kelly, Tyra probably has a ghost writer doing it. Just remember the celeb name may get attention, but if the story isn't good it won't fly.

  11. Such wise women you know.

    Also: Unless Tyra has been secretly working on her writing craft whilst building her empire, I suspect there will be some writing assistance along the way. Or at least, let's hope so.

  12. Didn't Madonna write a couple of children's books a few years back? I fear it's a trend. I can't wait for Mickey Rourke's “Where the Wild Things Are, like, Really Wild, Man,” or Naomi Campbell's series about her superheroine telephone thrower , “Miss Hissy Fit, Tomb Raider”

  13. “Who are the most exceptional models known to humankind and harbor unknown powers”? Wow. Just…wow.

    On the bright side, at least Ms. Banks does read children's literature (according to the December 2009 edition of INSTYLE magazine). So she's not (completely) trying to cash in on a hot segment of the economy.

  14. Love seeing Kim's words of wisdom here! What a great reminder that this is a journey, and we needn't be distracted by others' deals, etc. Just keep writing. πŸ™‚

  15. Eep. Well, even if someone is lucky enough for the speed track, we have to keep doing what we love and cross the finish line in our own time. I adore all the writers I've met and that alone is enough to give me encouragement. Let's keep cheering each other on!

  16. I read the news about this today too. I was like, really? REALLY?
    It doesn't look like a concept I'd want to read about.

    I'm sure it'll sell a zillions copies anyway. And so the Tyra empire grows.

  17. Oh, I feel this so hard. I mean, it's sort of the same thing I was talking about on Monday about the small deals.

    You will make it, your celebrity status notwithstanding. And your book will be amazing and it will be a big deal to you — and to me.

  18. Your critique group buddy is brilliant! Because … I agree … those types of announcements are SO frustrating … and they seem to come every day about a new celeb with a book deal!

  19. Susan: I love my crit partners!

    Kathi: You're probably right. I hope you're right!

    Shannon: She is very wise πŸ™‚

    Susan: Who knows…these celebrities have all sorts of secrets!

    Anne: If Micky and Naomi write those books, they ought to pay you for those titles πŸ™‚

    Krista: Yes, amazing story idea isn't it…and I'm glad to hear she reads πŸ˜‰

    Lori: I'm writing as fast as I can!

    Elaine: Unexpected is right!!

    Carolyn: Yes, the support of a good critique group is the best πŸ˜€

    Tricia: Thank you for the fabulous words of encouragement. You're right: it's good to cheer each other on.

    Lydia: And grows…and grows…

    Elana: You are too kind πŸ™‚

    Kelly H-Y: Yeah, I guess someone's reading them.

    Shelli: I know, right?

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