Sometimes this waiting game seems like it will go on forever. I'm talking about this period/phase/whatever I'm in right now where I've been putting my nose to the grindstone in terms of my writing and paying my dues. When I first set out over two years ago to write seriously and get published, it was with the understanding that success would not come overnight. I was ready for AT LEAST five years of churning out story after story, getting rejected left and right, and learning from my mistakes.
Some days this grueling ordeal is easier than others. But you know what? I'm patient. Like Father Time patient. I'm in no rush, and I'm still young. In the last two years I feel I've really come far in terms of my writing, but in no way do I feel like I'm *ready* just yet. My writing is not quite where it needs to be, although the ideas are coming faster and faster now. Seriously, it's all I can do to write fast enough to contain them all. That right there is something I'm happy with. It means that although my stories still lack that certain something to elevate them a notch above pedestrian, I still have that hunger and fire to make it in this genre. That's not going away.
So, looking back on the last two years, I feel that I still have a long road ahead before I can start cranking out good stuff. It might be three more years, but you know what? It could be five more years! I'm really not that hung up on it. I just want to keep writing.
In an interview, Elizabeth Bear admitted that she was rejected at least 700 times before finally publishing a professional short story. But she thinks it was more like over a 1,000! And yet she's one of the best and brightest--not to mention PROLIFIC--of the new crop of sci-fi writers that have emerged over the last couple of years. Other new writers have similar accounts.
Rather than sobering me, this makes me even more driven now. If they could keep on going, so can I.
So to all my friends and family reading this who are still asking me: "so, how's the writing coming along?"
It's coming, it's coming. Just be patient with me. I'll get there in my own special time. (ha ha)
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