In addition to Candy, two more fellow writers are up for RITAs. Jennifer Archer (www.jenniferarcher.net) and Jodi Thomas (www.jodithomas.com) . Congrats ladies!! The awards this year are a must see event. It says so much that Texas writers are repeatedly honored in this way. Amarillo seems to be a hot spot for growing not just writers, but award winning and bestselling writers. I think the old adage is true, Writers Beget Writers. There's a lot to be said for struggling along the path together, and having mentors to guide and encourage you. I can't imagine trying to write in isolation, having no one to bounce ideas off of, critique my work, or just plain listen to me moan about the difficulties of this business.
Its not that other writers guarantee anyone's success, only you can do that, but they keep you from giving up. They pick you up when you've been trounced on by life, dig you out from under the mountain of rejects and give you the will to keep on going. Ninety percent of this business is persistence. Thousands of people each day sit down and try to write a book. Of those, maybe 1 percent will ever be published. And they make it not because they are the best writers, have fancy English degrees, or are married to a publisher. They make it because they never gave up. They planted their butt in a chair everyday and made it happen.