Don’t be Tessie from Texas

February 2, 2006 | Karin's Blog | 3 comments

Lots of chatter about the Frey Fray, but since today is your lucky day, I’m not going to go there here. I’ve managed the last two nights to catch AI. Funny hahahaha, :smile:and very sad. :helpme:Funny in that I love to watch the play between Simon, Paula and Dawg man. Funny in that some of those contestants just make me laugh my ass off, and sad because well, let’s take Tessie from Texas for example. :holy: To look at her one would never think American Idol, Star, Superstar or even lounge singer. Of course the main component missing was/is her voice. She couldn’t sing (an all of the people who told her she could? Shame shame on you), not even carry a tune. As sweet as I am sure she is, she doesn’t have the look, the ‘tude, that certain spark.
Now, here’s the thing, she was too arrogant to listen to the judges. Too arrogant to hear what veteran professionals, professionals in the music industry had to say. Which brings me to my point. Even if you lack all of what Tessie lacks, if you listen, if you pay attention, if you take constructive criticism or even in Simon’s case destructive advice you can beat the odds. :beer:
Now let’s fast forward in say a year and take another look at Tessie, sans the braces, sporting a new do, new rags, and minus a few pounds. Let’s get rid of the silver nail polish, let’s get her into a performing arts class, let’s teach the girl how to move, how to smile, how to carry herself, how to project herself to the audience. And folks let’s get that girl some serious singing lessons, a voice coach. :helpme: In short let’s do what the judges say (OK, this is a bad example since Simon told her to anything so long as it didn’t involve singing). Get her in front of small groups, baby steps. Guess what? She might not be the next American Idol but she’ll be in the hunt, she’ll be able to hold her head up with respect in the industry and she’ll make Simon eat his words.:bird:
It’s the same in the publishing industry. I see and hear writers bitch and complain about stupid judges, stupid reviewers, idiot agents and out of touch editors. HELLLLLLLLLLO! With the exception of some judges the people in the biz are the people in the know, and while they do make mistakes, for the most part they don’t. So if you keep getting form rejection letters, and contest judges are saying the same thing, and editors don’t return your emails, listen, read between the lines.
Refine, hone, improve your craft. Write every day, get better, read, write, read and write some more. Don’t be too arrogant to think they are the ones missing the boat. Hell, they may be in a miniscule percentage of the times they reject, but by and large they know this business. So listen. Don’t be Tessie from Texas. Be the next American Idol by being open to criticism. Shake off the anger or the pity party or whatever it is you go through when someone in the industry knocks you down. Get up, dust yourself off, and get back to the business of writing.
Whew, ok, Tessie just struck a cord with me. In fact there have been an awful lot of Tessies this year. Get past your arrogance. For crying out loud it took a huge amount of bravery to get in front of those three judges, if you can do that: get rejected and survive it, then damn it you are brave enough to stop the arrogance and listen to the voice of reason and experience, and get your ass in gear and learn how to sing or in our case, write a damn good book.
Write on.




  1. Amanda Murphy

    Karin, excellent blog. My thoughts exactly during AI. (Don’t be pissed, someone should have told them ages ago they couldn’t sing.) People in the industry, any industry are there for a reason. Most of the time they know what they are talking about, and we need to listen! Amanda

  2. Edie Ramer

    LOL about Tessie. She wasn’t the only one who walked out angry and saying the judges were wrong. I feel the same way as you about writing contests. Although I don’t think all the judges’ comments are on the mark, don’t go on and on about it. Get over it and get writing.:typing:

  3. Betty

    This is a wonderful page for everyone! Visit my sites, please:

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • 2013 (2)
  • 2012 (7)
  • 2011 (10)
  • 2010 (41)
  • 2009 (156)
  • 2008 (165)
  • 2007 (160)
  • 2006 (149)
  • 2005 (26)