Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The World's Fastest Pen

By G.Ellen

Well. . .my family watched The World’s Fastest Indian last night, and boy, was it fascinating. My husband stopped watching before the main character made it out of LA, simply because of the way America was being presented. He was disgusted with the whole lifestyle that the character was introduced to.

I was simply amazed at how everywhere he went he found a new friend. What inspired me even more was how he fought for his dream–how he focused all his energy and overcame every obstacle to reach that dream.

Are you willing to go through that for your dream? Let's say writing is your goal in life and you're reading this because of that. Are you willing to go through the grueling hours of typing and editing and waiting for the mail to come with rejection after rejection–still convinced that what you have written has merit and someone will want to read it? That it will sell?

If you are, then you are made of some stern stuff. You have what it takes. You will go through hours of typing at the computer with your children whining and complaining around you, your dust tracks growing thicker and the microwave beeping every meal time to accomplish that goal. Your children will think that laundry is supposed to be piled in baskets in the laundry room and seeing folded and sorted clothing in their friends rooms is a strange sight.

Your spouse will think that going out to eat is a true treat when compared with canned chili for the third night in a row–no matter that you dressed it up with corn and tortilla chips. Your local office supply store will know you by name because you come in every other month for printing supplies, paper and burnable CD’s. The post office will recognize you by face, if not by name–assuring you that your book will reach it’s destination in one piece and they know you want signature confirmation, you don’t have to ask for it.

That is what it takes to be a true grit writer. Never mind that you’ll feel the rest of the world is passing you by and that somehow your children are missing out on something. What are their future spouses going to think when they are told that the laundry is supposed to be done this way? You just hope that everyone will understand when that book comes back in its box with your name on the cover and your picture on the back.

You made it. You're published. Every sacrifice was worth it.

Okay. . .maybe not the laundry bit with the kids, but the time at the computer was worth it. You’ll lie there on your back on your bed, book and check in hand, staring at the ceiling in amazement muttering to yourself that you finally made it. You did it. Against what everyone else said or thought—you did it.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

YES! I've so been there, done that on the laundry and the dinners. :)

One thing on the signature confirmation though--I've heard that most agents (editors, publishers) don't like that. Could you imagine getting 200 manuscripts a week and having to sign for every one of them? If you use Delivery Confirmation, the post office tracks the package and notifies you of delivery but without requiring the recipient to sign for it.

G.Ellen said...

Oh...so that's what I would do! Thanks!