Submitted…A Milestone

So, it’s been at least 10 years since I submitted any of my work for publication. I can’t believe that’s really true but there it is. I never stopped writing but I told myself that there were so many things going on in my life that I simply didn’t have time to work on sharing my words as well.  

I told myself that I needed a degree in Fine Arts and no one would take me seriously. I told myself that there are thousands of writers and what made me think that I was unique, talented or lucky enough to be successful? It’s kind of like self-hypnosis. Now, if only I could go the opposite route and convince myself of my inherit greatness. Working on it :).

The worst lies are those we tell ourselves.

In my newfound honesty, I can admit that the looming spectre of rejection shackled my brain just as surely as if I were chained. It was only that which stood in my way. Everything else was just noise. Fear really is our very worst enemy. It will shut you down before you can begin and steal the light from your world. Before you know it, you’re just drifting along content with the gloom and not asking anything of life. What a waste of life. I am still pissed off that it was ME standing in my own way.

I am not a TV hound but I do have a few favorites and American Idol is one of them. God given talent is a beautiful thing to see. I love watching people reaching for their dreams. I am right there with them, crying, cursing and cheering them on. Yeah, that was me you heard screaming last week when Naima Adedapo, Casey Abrams, Jacob Lusk and Karen Rodriguez made it into the Top 24. Actualization. Epiphany. Triumph. Elation. Just a few of my favorite words.   

But I digress, although I didn’t share my words I did continue recording them. They are like old friends who showcase different sides of me, my thoughts and experiences. I can see evolution in their pages, the writer in me continued to grow in depth and scope.   

Confidence. Focus. Courage. Moxy. Discipline. Hope. Possibility. Drive and Ambition. It’s my new mantra :).   

Getting to this place required me to see the need for change. Losing my job in 2008 forced on me the most uncomfortable of states – self-reflection. It sounds preachy but it is one of life’s truisms. When things outside go awry, we have no choice but to turn inwards for sustenance. What you find there is the barometer of whether or not you have been on a starvation diet or are healthy and thriving. I discovered that my ship was listing and even worse, I was off course. 

I have put my ear to the ground and made a concerted effort to listen to the small, questing voice of self. When I found her, I nurtured her :).

Saturday, I submitted one of my Erotica pieces for inlcusion in an Erotic Anthology. I am very proud that I took the step. It would be great for the exposure if my work is chosen but the feeling of empowerment I got from completing the task is the most important thing. It is a milestone that speaks of my belief in self and a renewed committment to becoming a published author. Yeah, I said that…

Are you on course?? Keep checking and make course corrections as necessary.


6 thoughts on “Submitted…A Milestone”

  1. That’s a good mantra.
    One worth sticking too.
    I believe that if we want something enough we will always have the opportunity to work for it and even get there

  2. Please, don’t take this the wrong way because I don’t mean it as a negative, but prepare yourself for a rejection. Most of us receive dozens of rejections before we get our first yes. For me, I got 37 rejection letters before the first publication and then nearly 100 (I literally lost count) before the second. Your ego takes a beating, but I took each rejection letter and nailed it to the wall by my writing desk as motivation.

    The important thing is to continue writing and honing your skills. You have a good voice. Eventually, you will find the right editor. It might be with this first piece but maybe not. Keep writing regardless. Keep submitting regardless. Divide the two into separate jobs and think of them as separate careers. The most important thing is to ignore that little voice of doubt.

    Congratulations. I know how hard that was to do, and I remember letting go of that first envelope and hearing it thud inside the mail drop. I nearly had a panic attack I was so nervous, and three or four months later, I got the form rejection letter in the mail. For a minute or two, I was devastated, but then, I remembered the words other writers had told me, the same as I just told you, and I took comfort in the fact that one “no” does not end a career. J. K. Rowling got something like 17 or 18 rejections for Harry Potter before the right editor read it.

    1. Alex,

      Thanks so much for the compliment and support. I really appreciate that you took the time to give me a heartfelt comment and the benefit of your experience. It was indeed a little scary but I pummeled past that by honing in on my mother’s favorite saying, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”

      I am prepared for a no, at least a slew of Nos (plural? lol), before the YES. I learned from the last lesson and will work very hard not to let rejection sap my strength again.

      The same thing happened to Stephen King which just goes to show – your Voice has to fall into the right ear in order for it to be appreciated. Keeping my fingers crossed. 🙂

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