I need an attitude adjustment.
Eep! Two days without writing. I can’t make it up. I must just keep trudging forward. Onward ho!
In other news, I received a lovely, lovely, lovely rejection for my favoritest picture book, one of those kinds of rejections that almost makes you feel okay for not getting the acceptance.
Okay, maybe not.
Here’s the thing. I’m freeing myself up from the idea that the chapter book that I’m writing for JoNoWriMo is for publication. The bottom line is that it is a story that my daughter would lovelovelove and I’m going to write it for her. I’m going to revise it and polish it and make it shiny when it’s finished. But if it’s one of those books that I never let see the light of day by anyone other than my daughter, well then, I’m okay with that. Because she’s going to love it.
There are times when I actually feel like a writer. I sit at keyboard, BIC, and write– even though there are distractions, even though I have to leave sentences half-done and race out the door to pick up children from school or to place toddler on the toilet, even though I have lunch cooking in the kitchen, even though my brain is fully aware that what I am writing will not remain that way forever because it is icky, jumbled, boring prose. Some days I ignore my inner critic. I just keep writing. I ignore the holes in my plot (or the non-existent plot) and get all my thoughts out on paper before they evaporate in a puff of smoke.
Today is one of those days.
Lately, I’ve considered myself more of a writer than I used to. I remember being at Chautauqua and David Harrison saying something to the effect of “whatever else you may be, you ARE a writer.” It rang so true for me because it made “writing”out to be a part of my makeup. Who I am as a person. It made me feel justified in spending time writing stories, even if they would never be published. I *do* want to be published someday. But regardless, I am a writer. I have something to say, even if it’s just to get these voices out of my head! Accepting that fact makes me a more balanced person. There is an inherent value in just. being. a. writer.
I know there will be those of you who read this and think, that’s not enough for me. I’m pursuing being published. And I understand that. There are days when I feel that way too. But on days when I am able to just do it and take joy in the process, I feel like it’s enough for this moment.
Do you play favorites? Do you have favorite manuscripts? Ones that you care for more than other of your perfectly competent interesting manuscripts? I just got a rejection today for my favorite manuscript. It didn’t really sting, because the story is still out at 3 other houses. But it got me to thinking. *WHY* is it my favorite? Why will I feel a unique level of joy when that one sells that I wouldn’t necessarily reach if I sold other manuscripts? And if it never sells, or if we reach the point where I think it’s going to have to be revised to fit someone else’s vision in order to sell, will I want to do it?
No offense to my redheaded stepchildren manuscripts (and no offense to redheads, or stepchildren or any actual human redheaded stepchildren) but for today, *this* is the one I love. (Note the ‘for today’. I fully admit how fickle I am.)
I just hope I can find another someone who loves it that much too.
I love Poetry Friday. It gets me going back through my own poetry and makes me want to do something with it!
Poetry is such a heart sale. HA! I meant to write that poetry is such a hard sale. I turned away for a moment and when I turned back I caught my error. But you know, poetry is such a heart sale. Even a simple poem on a sparrow. Even a funny take on bathtime. The best thing about poetry is that the reader recognizes something. It draws from our hearts, from the seat of our emotions. Be it funny, or serious, or pithy, or deep, the reader must say ‘Yes, that’s it. I see it that way too’ or ‘isn’t that amazing. I’ve never thought of it that way before.’ Poetry pulls us in, often with the choice of just one word. It’s the singular image that stays with me when I read poetry, even the funny ones. Oh, that my own poetry would cut to the chase and cause those singular images to reflect a child’s own thoughts or tug on their funny bones.
The click of a shutter,
A hand-picked panorama,
cradled in time by christening,
a cupful of precision