Friday, January 8, 2010
When Everyone Succeeds But You...
Lately, I've been surrounded by success. Not mine. Several of my writer friends have recently published, several others have gotten agents. Another few have finished their manuscripts.
I'm happy for them. They've worked hard and their books are really good. As happy as I am for them, part of me feels like a big fluffy failure each time another one of them succeeds. Now this isn't their problem, it's all mine.
I know it's petty. It isn't their fault that I haven't made it, it's mine.
I'm not focused enough on my writing. I break my self-imposed deadlines. I don't submit material much any more and that's why I'm failing.
You can't succeed if you aren't trying your hardest and I'm not trying hard enough.
I've made some half-hearted efforts with my writing. I sent out a few short stories to contests, all rejected. I sent forty-eight poetry submissions last year, all rejected.
Finally I stopped sending writing out. It's hard to believe in yourself when the editors in charge don't agree with your writing's worth. I'm not a horrid writer, I know that. Am I Steinbeck? No, but I'm not Carrot Top either (Okay, he's not a writer but he is odd in a creepy way and not funny at all).
But what I write doesn't seem to impress editors, contest judges, or anyone in charge.
I'm not telling you this to feel sorry for me. I'm doing a great job of that on my own. I'm sharing the experience so other writers know they aren't alone.
It's okay to feel a little lost when everyone seems to have figured out the how's of publishing and you can't even find your pen.
What I need to do is get some impartial person to tell me if there is a weakness in the writing itself. If the writing is solid, I need to target my entries better. Sending submissions out in a scattershot format doesn't work. All I get from random entries is a headache.
Instead of feeling sorry for myself, I need to get off my butt and make a plan. Then, I actually need to follow said plan.
And if that doesn't work, I can always trying sleeping my way to the top.
Men love middle-aged chubby women, right? Right.
Okay, so I need to work hard on the plan because I don't think the sex for success idea will work. Not unless publishers are kinkier than I think.