Sunday, October 18, 2009


I’m the first to admit that, on some days, a writer can feel a bit self-pitying. I think we probably all really understand that without me going into it too deeply. And besides, I see little point in dwelling on the bad bits of this journey:

• A certain rejection that, even though (like everyone) you’ve had hundreds of them, really does sting because you admired that editor’s work so much and would have loved to work with her.

• The gut-wrenching sickness when, after reading your first three chapters and requesting your full MS, she then sent you an unsigned form rejection.

• The genuine joy and lingering envy (not jealousy) when someone you know gets that agent, that real publishing deal.

• The spiraling frustration that you’re not even close to achieving the level of art and craft you aspire to, let alone commercial success or a decent paycheck.

What is the point in wallowing?

There’s none. There’s no point in even feeling frustrated about all the ideas pilling up, or the complete lack of them, about a lack of time, or a churning black hole lack of plot. ALL grown-ups with responsibilities lack time. And ALL grown-ups get blocked in some area of their lives.

So, I’m taking the advice I always drum into my writing class at Art School of Distinction. I have slipped away to the coffee shop, right now, and I’m going to write. Because I feel like it right now, that’s why. Even though the sink is full of dishes and the email overflowing. Because I’m fairly confident that ten minutes from now, I’ll have no doubt I’m doing exactly what I’m meant to do. I’ll be flying—maybe in fits and starts—but I’ll be flying.

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