So when I’d written some more, I thought about querying again. I mean, why not, right? I knew more, I’d studied and learned more. Maybe I was ready. Maybe not. I remember coming across an interesting quote that made me think about my life and a particular experience I’d had.
When my children were little, four, two, and about fourteen months, I hurt my back. Three discs slipped out and wouldn’t go back, which produced extreme pain for several months. I tried physical therapy, which made it worse. I tried pain therapy. There were days I’d crawl around my house to care for my children. (My floor had never been so clean once I got a good look.)
There were nights I’d sleep sitting folded forward or hanging myself upside down to try and alleviate the pain. I didn’t sleep well, could barely function. Nothing worked. After about a year of this, I was finally allowed to have surgery. About three months after the surgery, I was able to walk normally again. It wasn’t fixed completely, and I still have days where walking is difficult, but the days of crawling around and crazy positions has passed.
On my bad days, I would’ve done a lot to lessen the pain. On my darkest days, I would’ve done anything.
And the quote made me wonder what I’d do to get published…
If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
If there’s one thing that everyone who’s written for very long knows, the commonality of all published authors is perseverance. They kept moving forward, even when it seemed like getting published was no longer in their future.
Some authors will tell you that you have to be born with the talent of storytelling. I think we are born to natural ability, but someone once said:
It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.
If you have problems with your writing, then stick with it. Keep learning. Keep growing. With writing, there is always something to learn, no matter how long you’ve been doing it.
So take some advice from some truly amazing people:
When you get into a tight place, and everything goes against you till it seems as if you couldn’t hold on a minute longer, never give up then, for that’s just the place and time that the tide’ll turn.
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th.
Let me tell you the secret that has led to my goal. My strength lies solely in my tenacity.
These people don’t or didn’t know this because they succeeded quickly. They know or knew this because they failed over and over and then eventually, after they didn’t think they could hold on any longer, they kept holding on. They kept trying.
Isn’t this what we write about? The hero’s journey? So be your own hero. Don’t give up the fight.
Champions keep playing until they get it right.
Billie Jean King
You might not be a champion yet, but if you keep writing and trying to improve, you will be.
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