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Great nations write their autobiographies in three manuscripts - the book of their deeds, the book of their words and the book of their art.
I never saw any of my dad's stories. My mother said he had piles and piles of manuscripts.
I can't predict how reading habits will change. But I will say that the greatest loss is the paper archive - no more a great stack of manuscripts, letters, and notebooks from a writer's life, but only a tiny pile of disks, little plastic cookies where once were calligraphic marvels.
A typical agent in New York gets 400 query letters a month. Of those, they might ask to read 3-4 manuscripts, and of those, they might ask to represent 1.
I'm constantly trying to keep people guessing as to what I'm doing, and I will spend enormous amounts of time looking at manuscripts and asking questions, and people will say, 'I know what his next book is about.'
We sometimes received - and I would read - 200 manuscripts a week. Some of them were wonderful, some were terrible; most were mediocre. It was like the gifts of the good and bad fairies.
To be perfectly honest the old habits, specifically deadlines, still very much inform what I do. I am brutally disciplined about getting manuscripts in on time.
Movable type seemed magical to the monks who were illuminating manuscripts and copying texts. Certainly e-books seem magical to me.
I won't leave any unfinished manuscripts.
In Brentwood we had a big safe-deposit box to put manuscripts in if we left town during fire season. It was such a big box that we never bothered to clean it out.
Agents are essential, because publishers will not read unsolicited manuscripts.
I sold my first short story while I was home on maternity leave, then began working on novels. Since I was reading and enjoying romance novels at the time, the first two unpublished manuscripts I wrote were both romances. I sold my third novel, 'Call After Midnight,' to Harlequin Intrigue after submitting it unagented.
I wake at 5 or 5:30 most mornings, make myself a latte and grab a cookie, write until 10 or 11, go have my favorite meal, 'second breakfast,' or grab coffee with friends, or play basketball. Then, around noon, I begin apologizing via email for the manuscripts I can't get to.
I submitted manuscripts to publishers. This was not so much a feeling that I should be published as a wish to escape the feared and hated drudgery of normal work.
I keep working under the delusion that someday a library will ask for my manuscripts.
The usual way - through a long series of rejections, revising my manuscripts, and kept trying again and again. Finally I was fortunate enough to find a good agent.
I didn't go to graduate school, where all the important writers seemed to be getting their start. I didn't pursue getting published in literary magazines. I didn't even send out countless pitch letters and manuscripts to agents.
Now I have to have the biggest P.O. box in the entire post office to get all the manuscripts coming in.
My parents were both writers - they would type their manuscripts sitting side by side on the veranda of our house near Watford - so I wanted to do something different. I wanted to be a bluegrass singer, an architect, a landscape gardener, or to do something with animals.
So: we're all tired. Now what? Manuscripts written in Club Med?
After my husband spell-checks one of my manuscripts, my editor says, 'It's been Normanized.'
My study is a converted garage which is largely lined with bookshelves and cardboard boxes filled with manuscripts of my film scripts, plays and books.
My first three manuscripts were epic fantasy - like high fantasy - and then the fourth one was a historical fantasy about Mozart as a child. I still have a soft spot for that one!
I don't listen to music when I write, but I do turn on appropriate music when I read portions of my manuscripts back to myself - kind of like adding a soundtrack to help shape mood.
My three years at the NIH were critical in my scientific education. I learned an immense amount about the research process: developing assays, purifying macromolecules, documenting a discovery by many approaches, and writing clear manuscripts describing what is known and what remains to be investigated.
Stanley B. Prusiner
John F. Kennedy
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
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