Failure

I have been a writer since before I could hold a pencil, but this year I quit.  I stuffed all of my scribbled in notebooks and printed out drafts in a storage box and put them away.  I unsubscribed to my online writing groups, bailed on my critique group and all but disappeared from the writing world.  At one point I even toyed with getting rid of all the writing related books and magazines that I’ve accumulated over the years.  Why would I need any of those things if I wasn’t going to write any more?  I wouldn’t.  In the end I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of the books.  Even if I never looked through them again, they would always be there “just in case”.

So what caused this catastrophic decision?  Failure.  When I finally dedicated myself to make freelance writing my career it bombed.  Part of my failing was in the lack of goals and planning.  I began subbing every piece that I  had sitting around that I hadn’t done anything with and soundly received rejection after rejection.  Most of all there was silence.  Rejections aren’t personal until you wrap up everything you are into writing.  I was no longer objective, because if I wanted to support myself with writing alone I had to succeed.  Each and every rejection and lack of response chipped away at my determination until there was nothing left.  This was the point that I decided to give up.

It’s been months since I wrote anything, until now.  I was doing some fall cleaning and came across that box filled with my writing.  I dug through the box and read some of what I wrote and was surprised.  My writing is actually good. Well some of it anyways.  I dug out a half filled notebook and turned to an empty page.  At the top I wrote “To Do” and began my list of projects to work on.  Quitting for a writer is never an option.  It is so ingrained in our being that nothing, not even failure, can kill the desire to write permanently.  So today I am starting new.  I am going to put together a plan and work toward my goal in steps instead of jumping in with both feet and drowning.  And failure will never stop me again.

 

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