I love you all, you know. I love getting up in the morning and reading what everyone is up to. I'm a crappy commenter often, I'll admit. Sometimes I can't think of a single thing to say. I'm not terribly clever 24/7. In fact, my clever is sort of like seizures and comes in flashes. Sometimes, and I'll be honest here, what you say on your blogs, dear friends, is so incredibly insightful and deep, I got nothing. I just stare at your page, then read it again. Then I give you a psychic pat on the shoulder and move on. I try to follow everyone who follows me, but sometimes I can't find you. Your little icon has no link back and I'm incredibly stupid at working this blogging thing.
One of my dearest blogging friends, Anne, gave me an award today. She's at http://piedmontwriter.blogspot.com/ Pardon the lack of linkage, but I'm fairly certain those that follow me have already found this most awesome woman so don't need a clicky anyway. She's given me the 'A is for Awesome Award' which is pretty alliterate. I give this to...
Sarah a.k.a. Falen at http://falenformulatesfiction.blogspot.com/
She's an awesome and funny lady. She's also got a pretty funny and insightful dog.
Charity at http://charitywrites.blogspot.com/
She's been with me from the beginning, when I started out at Bransford's forums what seems ages ago, and still she's with me. I appreciate you, chickadee.
Mel at http://caledonialass.blogspot.com/
Again, I'll remind people I'm a sucky commenter, but Mel is not. She's always got something awesome to say to me, and she always makes me smile.
Shannon at http://shannonkodonnell.blogspot.com/
As many, many people know, Shannon is the bomb. She's got a zillion followers, but still reads me and almost always comments to let me know her thoughts.
Last, but definitely not least, I give this to Tahereh at: http://stiryourtea.blogspot.com/
Her post today is here: http://stiryourtea.blogspot.com/2010/04/probable-possibility.html
If you've not already read it, go read it now. NOW. I love that she is always so crazily upbeat and funny, but today's post made me cry. LITERALLY CRY MY EYES OUT (okay, not literally. They're still there), and I'll tell you why: She stole these words from my heart.
"i'd squeeze my eyes shut and swallow the heat in the back of my throat and clench my jaw and hold my breath and finally exhale as i read the email only to blink back the rejection burning through my body, shaming me, embarrassing me, diminishing me into silence.
it takes less than 10 seconds to realize you've been rejected."
I disagree. It takes me about 0.75 seconds. I see 'thank you' and I already know it's a rejection. I imagine a request for more pages to not start out with that platitude. I've never seen one, but I imagine it has my name and starts with something like "I've read this and wish to see more..." or "I'm happy to..." I don't know why, but I expect the letter to start with the agent speaking about themselves first and start with the word "I" or some variation.
"everyday you hear about people getting huge book deals, triple-book deals, massive book deals. everyday someone has a new story. someone is a break-out success. someone popped up out of nowhere and knew the right person at the right time and hit it big.
sometimes it hurts to hear.
not because you're jealous, besties. you're not jealous. you're just worried.
you wonder if there's enough room for you, too."
This was so accurate. I worry about this all the time. There's so many of us, dear friends. So many talented people out there and only so many openings. It truly is like trying to apply for your dream job and each query letter is your application. You send it out into the world and pray you meet whatever qualifications they are looking for. It's frustrating, yes, but heartbreaking. I want to be one of the people with a story. I want to be able to say, "If I did it, then you can, too."
But I can't. I'm still in the application stage. It's not about fame and fortune (it actually never was for me) but about accomplishing something I've set out to do. Even if I get published, I doubt anyone will know me or what I look like or where I live because being a writer isn't about being a celebrity. It's about being a storyteller. At least to me.
"maybe you think no one cares.
maybe you think your loved-ones are humoring you.
maybe you think they'll take you seriously if you land an agent.
maybe you wonder if you'll ever publish a book.
maybe you wonder if you're wasting your time?"
I appreciate Tahereh for writing this. I can see these words and feel the truth of them. I also know that I will continue to feel this way until I 'make it' because 'making it' is the only way to feel as though my hopes and dreams are not in vain. Every day I think about giving up. Every day I don't. Agent rejection is not personal. I know this. My logical brain knows this. My heart doesn't. My heart tells me they all think I'm an idiot hack who just wasted 2.4 minutes of their time.
Einstein is credited with saying that repetition of the same activity in which you expect a different result is a trait of lunacy. Are we just crazy then? Okay, yeah we are. We know this. We revel in it. So trudge on, fellow trudgers.