AI in New York

January 25, 2007 | Karin's Blog | 8 comments

So, I didn’t even bother jotting down notes last night. Like I said yesterday, I’m not feeling sorry for anyone any more. But, I lied. I forget the names of the two gals but the first one who begged to go to Hollywood, after she was given unanimous thumbs down, broke my heart. I felt bad for her desperation. I felt more terrible for her when she said she was tired of hearing no.

And the other gal? The one who had made it before but got knocked out at the group rounds? Her desperate begging made me uncomfortable, and I wanted her to stop, and to listen to what the judges were saying. She refused. There is nothing sadder than watching someone beg from someone who wants nothing to do with them. The very least one can do is maintain their dignity. It was hard to watch someone’s dreams go up in smoke, but here’s the bottom line: This completion is for the next American Idol, not the next quasi, sort of American Idol. They want the best of the best. It wasn’t that chick’s time, she needed to go back and work harder.

It’s the same with publishing. It’s ugly, it hurts and it makes us desperate, so desperate we sometimes settle. I’m telling you not to. Follow you heart, but play smart. If you’re doing the same thing and it’s not working? Do it different. Don’t be so damn stubborn and think you know how to do it. Trust me, my arrogance set me back at least two years. I finally wised up and listened. I also decided I wasn’t going to settle for a lousy agent because at least that agent wanted me or a publisher that was not willing to grow me.

It’s kind of ironic that this contest is coinciding with AI right now. While there are those first lines that got the ax, and may someday come back to be nominated for a RITA, I believe the creme will rise to the top and make it to the editor’s desk, and eventualy a sale.

And just because you didn’t make it to the second round or may not make it to the next, learn from what is gong on here, take from it what you can, and next time come out with both barrels firing.





  1. Cele

    I watched the entire show last night, but missed Tuesday’s. My heart broke for the girl who had cut class, ran the state line, and went against her dad just to try out because she believed in herself. Her dad didn’t sound that bad on the phone, but I’m sure after last night he is seeing things a wee bit differently.

  2. Karin

    Cele, that was Sarah. Such a brave girl. I felt so bad she didn’t have anyone to share her excitment with, well except Ryan. If my 19 year old daughter wanted to take off to NYC to audition for AI, and I was opposed, I’d still go, I mean I couldn’t let her go alone!

  3. spyscribbler

    I always find your first line contest DAYS after it’s too late to play. Two years in a row, LOL. I don’t know how I do that! I do enjoy reading it, though!

    I don’t have the stomach for American Idol. I don’t mind putting myself out there and I like your analogy, but … I just can’t watch people having their dream torn down so publicly. All my students LOVE it, though. (Actually, that’s what kind of scares me.)

    Oh … and your contest is WORLDS above American Idol. Your contest is awesome.

  4. Karin

    Hey glad to see you, Spy. Sorry you missed getting in on the contest! But we’ll have another one this summer. I’ll be sure to let you know ahead of time.
    And thanks for the compliment. I’m enjoying the lines here as well.

  5. Karin

    Good luck, Meretta!

  6. Jan

    Excellent analogy, Karin. Settling is rarely good for the artist, yet sometimes they have to to get the foot in the door. It’s what they do “afterward” that sets them apart. Learn/grow/take the chance. You did it so well!

  7. Laurie Wood

    Karin, what would you say was the biggest decision you made after you got your first book published?

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