Everybody loves an underdog. They’re hard not to root for.
But I’ve never felt much like an underdog when it comes to writing. The only time I’ve been told I “couldn’t write stories” was by a kid in my fourth-grade class before the fourth-grade writing assessment. This kid was obviously wrong, as I was the only one to get a perfect score of 6 on the assessment out of the whole fourth grade. Oops.
I’ve never gotten a bad grade on anything I’ve written. I’ve written somewhere around 100 short stories, many poems (haven’t counted), some random short pieces of fiction, a fair amount of stand-alone drama scenes, a 10-minute play, a 6-page play, and I’m sure I’ve written something that doesn’t fit those categories. People get excited when I tell them I’m writing something. I frequently get asked questions about my writing. It’s always something. But it’s never negative.
I’m hardly an underdog in some ways.
But I don’t have enough experience. I’m young. I’m going into this with fresh eyes, which is good, because I can put my own spin on things, but I really have no idea about most anything. I’m learning. Rapidly. I’ve made some mistakes in my query letters. But I made a point to make the changes in my document where I edit them.
But it’s not enough. I need to be sending to journals and stuff. And I’m not. Because I’m busy with class and work, and I want my downtime to not be stressful. Submitting is stressful.
What I’d really like to do is to get right on that and submit a lot of stuff this summer. That would make me happy.
And I’d really like to post on this blog more regularly. So I’m going to try my hardest to figure out a system for that. I need to get more involved in social media if I want to be known, if I want to make waves. I want to be seen. But I have to make myself worth seeing. I have to step up my game.
I don’t care if I look “too young to have written something.” I don’t care if you’re not the right agent for my project. I don’t care if all you give me is a form letter with my name pasted in (though it does seem like some of the replies have given a personal comment or two). I don’t care if you don’t think my project will sell.
Because I’m doing this. And you can’t stop me. I appreciate everyone who has ever told me to keep at it. And I will. If you won’t help me, then I’ll find someone else who will. You keep on doing your thing. And I’ll continue doing mine. Nothing wrong with you–we’re just not on the same path.
My work will be seen. And that’s a fact.
Show a friend something you’ve written and get some honest feedback. Improve it. Don’t stop until you feel you’ve done well enough that you’re satisfied. Be insatiable. Never settle for “good enough.”