Perseverance | Quality # 5

On February 3, 2010 by Aimee

Christina Katz puts out a weekly newsletter with loads of helpful information as well as her own thoughts on writing. I love to read it, especially when I’m thinking … “what the world am I doing this for?” or “I really don’t need this” and then my fingers set to type away again. Her newsletter, “The Prosperous Writer” isn’t necessarily about making loads of money. There are other facets and this week, I’m answering her questions …

“Have you been haunted by the talent ghost? Are you still waiting for it to possess your body so that others will proclaim you permanently brilliant? Or is it enough to just write? How will you persevere through the long silences and occasional showers of praise?”

Honestly, right now? I couldn’t care less what people think about my writing because I do it for me. It’s not my day job, I’m not trying to make a fortune (ok, I am, but who isn’t?) and if I suck, I suck … but my Mom doesn’t think so. 😉 Neither does my sister or my beta-reading friend. 🙂

Many months ago I posted in a private blog (private means I’m not going to share it’s link, just fyi) about my own talents. It’s interesting that this topic ends up being #5 and being this week as I find myself mired in all sorts of personal struggles.

Anyway … back to that old hidden post — I wrote about how I find myself really good at lots of things, but not great at most of them. I wondered, then, how that would affect me personally and professionally and I do believe having written it and thought about it, I’ve beaten myself down with it. With every failure I refer back to it. With every success, I refer back to it. It’s like a ghost in my conscious driving a wedge into my confidence.

But, with writing, I look at it differently. I write because it’s a fun hobby and I have a story in my head. I fall in love with my characters and if I really fall in love with them, it makes me happy and I see the story through to the end. (A few of my characters have been recycled because I found I didn’t really like them. 😉 ).

Talent got me into piano competitions as a kid … or did it? I practiced for 1/2 and hour every day. Maybe it was perseverance. Talent got me to the top of my class in high school. Or did it? I worked my butt off to get there. Talent got me into college, made me the wife that I am, brought me three mostly-well-adjusted-but-still-spoiled kids. Right?

Nope. I learned perseverance from my parents … way, way, way back when. You just don’t quit.

These days, in this economy, in my real job and in my personal life I have to remind myself of that every day.

You just don’t quit.

Some days, I forget. I’ll probably forget again today. But then something will happen that will remind me … a phone call from my Dad, an email from a customer, the sun that shines after five days of doom and gloom, snow and ice, gray and wintery cold.

For me, writing could go somewhere … or not, the beauty is that no matter what happens, I’ve done it for ME and…

“I won’t quit.”

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