For Cheryl Foster, who asked to read something Inspirational.
What do you do when you’re just not wanted?
I had intended to start my “Birthday Blogs” on Feb. 1st, full of cute musings, funny stories, and cat pictures. But as I just had a pretty big disappointment happen, I realized that today is exactly 35 days til I turn 35, so now is just as good a time as any to get real.
You know those bloggers/speakers/mega personalities that encourage you by saying, “Don’t give up!” as they recline on a sofa made from money and pick their teeth with golden toothpicks after eating a salad of shredded cash?
I’m not one of those people.
I’m not a millionaire. I’m not even a thousandaire. I might be a hundredaire. I do bring in tens of dollars a week.
But I’m going to tell you not to give up; and given my circumstances, I’m probably going to sound ridiculous while I say it. What kind of person encourages people when they’re not technically (read financially) successful yet?
An old friend of mine told me once that I tend to withhold. She lamented, “You never tell me what’s going on in your life until it’s over. And even then, you wait weeks or even months to let me know it happened in the first place.”
The distributor for my first film told me, “People don’t follow projects. People follow people.” He encouraged me to be someone worth following. Be someone interesting.
The question stands, what is interesting? Conflict is interesting. How people deal with conflict is interesting. But, how can I be interesting, if I never let on when the conflict and struggles come?
Well, friends- the struggle bus has just pulled in to the station.
The book Rachael and I worked very, very hard writing two years ago, and which was a sure thing for publication, just had the contract inexplicably released nearly a year after signing that contract. I say inexplicably, because I’m certain they had very good reasons for doing so, I’m just not certain what they were. A sure thing is no longer sure. As it turns out, a sure thing is never sure.
What do you do when you’re rejected, not wanted, turned down, or turned over?
More exactly, what do I do? I give myself a day (more or less) to be really, really, really sad/dejected/angry/pouty/whatever emotion I want to express about it. I express it, I feel it, I let it move through me and out. I sit and stare, cry and whine, or sleep and comfort eat. Maybe all of the above.
The important part is to let it out. I can’t move on and do anything about it until that emotion is out. Then the next morning, I tell my “First World” pouty princess self to get over it. I am warm, fed, safe and dry. In the grand scheme of things, this is not a thing worth worrying about.
Their perceived rejection is nothing personal. If it was, I didn’t need to work with them in the first place. They are a business, and they have looked at their business and decided my business doesn’t mix with theirs.
Okay. Now what? Now, we regroup. What we do NOT do is give up.
It’s a good book. I think you guys will like it. I read that Kathryn Stockett had “The Help” rejected 60 times before it was finally picked up and became “The Help” we know of today.
I think she’s probably braver than me. After about 30 rejections, I’d more than likely cry myself to sleep and burn the manuscript, afraid the poison of it’s rejection power would infect the rest of my potential manuscripts.
But I’m not her, I’m me. Right now, I’ve only been rejected once (for this project) so I’m still feeling optimistic. Actually, it’s started a little fire budding in my soul. Like Marty McFly being called a chicken, nothing spurs me on like being told I can’t do something. Right now, I’ve been told I can’t publish a book. At least, not with them.
In truth, this turn of events goes perfectly with the theme of our book. It’s a behind the scenes look at the making of our first film, “No Lost Cause.” We decided to call it, “The Why Not Philosophy.” It’s premise is that you should face every challenge with the battle cry of “Why not?! Why can’t we do this! We can do anything!”
The other side of the coin or phrase is: after you tackle said challenge and things start going wrong, because they just do sometimes, you ask yourself, “Why is this bad thing happening???” And then you answer with a muttered, “Because, why NOT.”
Why not. It’s life. And life never, ever promised to be fair. It just promised to be.
We know what we want to do. For the next 35 days, I’ll be talking about things like this. Maybe some days I’ll be really excited, maybe some I’ll be depressed, anxious, or really, really tired and only post a pithy quote or picture of one of my cats to make me feel better. But I’m going to say something, every day.
In 35 days, I’ll be 35, and I may or may not have a published book. Let’s see what happens. If there’s something particular you want to know about this process, let me know. This ‘real talk bubble’ may only last for these 35 days, but let’s see where it takes us.