Monday, October 10, 2011

Just Better Than

When I get one of these ... 

Amie--Managing editor recommended this story--I spent some time mulling it over after reading. It's a great story, well-written, but just not what I'm looking for right now. Submit something else soon if you'd like! 
I need to read this ... 

... to remind myself that almost is better than. Just better than. 
Writing is hard work. Those of us in the throes know that better than. Just better than. No, in this case, better than those who aren’t in the throes. Sure, I’m not cutting or injecting people. I’m not shaping the young minds of future generations or running into buildings swallowed by flames. I’m certainly not putting my ass on the line on a battlefield (unless you think Love is a Battlefield). The truth is, I don’t have the courage to do any of those things. That being admitted, I appreciate those who do do those things. 
So I’m posting this here little post to give a shout out to all the writers out there (wave your hands in the air), because I’m feeling a little under appreciated, and well, goddamn lonely. I suppose most artists would describe their craft as a lonely profession, but because I don’t paint or sculpt or construct or compose or bake or soufflĂ©, I’m categorizing writing as THE Lonely Profession. 
I write, and while there aren’t really days when I wish I didn’t, there are plenty when I wish it was easier. Easier to be great, I mean. Sure, it if was easy I suppose it wouldn’t be worth doing (blah, blah, blah), but no matter how much you want to snuggle up in that silver lining, almost can leave you feeling like compost. (TGINAP: Thank God I’m Not A Poet.) 
Then, just when I’m wallowing—wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am—I’m inspired by somebody like Ira Glass or somebody else I’ve never met whose story just got picked up by _______________________. Or somebody I know really well who had the courage (yes, courage) to tell me about something, anything, they wrote down.  
While I believe it takes at least some raw ability to write, I believe it also takes a fuckload of work. And Ira is right: it’s gonna take a while before the fruits of your work won’t disappoint you. Right now, for two minutes and forty-three seconds, I will let my latest rejection be a reminder that I’m inching that much closer to not being disappointed. 
Remember, My Dearest Writers: We Are Strong. (And No One Can Tell Us We’re Wrong.)