Saturday, November 26, 2011

It's dark down here...

It has been a sobering few days. After the thrill of getting a great mark on my assignment, it has been all down hill since then with some things that didn't go my way. Feeling a little bleak today but felt a bit buoyed by this post from Nicola Morgan. If you have been trying to get published for a long time and things haven't been happening then Nicola's story will give you hope. Its a good story. I admire and respect her perseverance. And her career since she first got published has been impressive. The thing that resonated with me most though is how she views the setbacks and disasters she has experienced.

Nicola says her first book,  Mondays are Red was published in 2002 and I have been very lucky ever since, though it has not always been easy and I’ve had my knockbacks. Authors tend to hide those bad times and you should realise that beneath every apparently successful author’s confident exterior are bruises and scars. But do I wish I hadn’t had the years of failure, of not knowing whether I’d ever be published? No. They stop me taking anything for granted or thinking too highly of myself. They are crucial to who I am now; they are also why I understand what gets published and why some perfectly wonderful writing does not.

What doesn't kill us makes us stronger. Setbacks and disasters are character building. At first I agreed completely with Nicola. I would probably be way more of a brat if everything had gone my way. Would I pay it forward as much if I didn't know how difficult and slippery this business can be? I still do agree with her about that.  But if I knew other authors bore the same bruises and scars that I did, I think it would make me feel a bit better about my own. And if I knew what had caused those scars and bruises I might take a different approach in future to avoid some of them. The other night I discovered a writer friend had experienced exactly the same setback I had a few years ago. She will be the third person that I know of that this has happened to. Are there others? Should we sit back and accept it or are there things we can do to save other people this experience in the future.  Maybe its not right that we just passively accept the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.

No comments: