And so after being assured that -after having three short stories accepted for publication-“yes dear you are in fact a writer”, I thought it time to act like a grown up. By that I mean start acting like I know what I’m doing. This as you can probably tell is a fairly new concept for me, you see I’m a teenage reject.And as a teenage reject I can be found quite often in a state of tantrum at the unfairness of it all.
Obviously I’m well past my teenage years, my ego, bless it, poor thing, is not.
But I do have some adult tendencies. My tantrums are, largely, internalised. I have kids and I teach kids, I can’t have them thinking I’m anything less than sub-zero cool.
But… these internal tantrums are borne out a deep seated desire to succeed at, well… put quite simply, the telling of tales, the spinning of yarns, the depiction of discourse and the unfolding of fiction. In short, I want people to see and enjoy my stories, but this in itself is a difficult task.
As my fellow tale tellers will know, many a rejection proceeds an acceptance and this is where a self-confessed teenage reject can come undone.
But not me.
“Ha!” I hear you cry, ” how can you talk of teenage ego and then declare yourself immune to rejection?”
Ah, you see I didn’t say it doesn’t affect me, I merely said that it is not the undoing of me. Have no doubt, the rejection I received this morning for what I can most accurately describe as a story that had a difficult birth, ( honestly I find writing in the first person almost impossible, but I gave it whirl) did cause a twinge of pain in the chest area.
But… after having submitted it, after having pushed the send button over a month ago, I had this sudden horrible realisation that what was now winging it’s way to my chosen online journal was not a well crafted piece of literary genius. It was in fact a mere brain fart that needed a damn good edit.
So when it dropped back into the ample bosom of my inbox, I embraced it with gladness and began at once to edit the crap out of it. This I will continue to do until it emerges once more, a shiny new gem that will, in a few months time, wing it’s way once again to the
son’s of bitches really nice editors, who were kind enough to spare their time reading my initial pile of tripe.
You see rejection is not the end.
It makes us stronger, it makes more objective of our own talents and areas for improvement.
It makes us better readers and better writers.
It gives us the drive to create, because let’s face it, writers are masochists. If it was easy we’d all be avoiding it. But give any writer a slim chance in hell and they’ll take it.
I know I will.