Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Thick Skin

It's hard to develop a thick skin. I know for a fact that I am improving in this area, but I see that I still have a long way to travel down the road of managing my writing expectations. Rejection is a big part of the process, and endless re-writes, and some days its easier to accept than others.

My screenplay is on its way back to me with notes for more revisions. Looking at the big picture, I can sometimes say, "It takes however long it takes to get it just right. The fact that I've been working on it for 18 months is normal. I'm making the story stronger and better each time." That's the rational, reasonable side of me. The other side screams, "Seriously? It's not ready yet? I'll still be working on this thing when I'm 95!"

The important thing is not to quit. To quote Winston Churchill, "Never, never, never, never, never give up." My script is coming back to me at the same time that my editor read the first draft of my magazine article and essentially told me to go back to the drawing board. Not because the writing was bad, but because I'd covered material that will be featured in other articles, and I needed to focus on more specific areas for the piece.

It's all a learning curve. I recognize that I don't enjoy the learning part. I want to be proficient, dammit, at what I'm doing. But then I remember that there are no shortcuts to success. I must put one foot in front of the other on a daily basis, and keep writing, and get better on a page by page basis at what I'm trying to do. The high of having a story published was wonderful to ride, but a few days later I'm back to re-writing and re-working. Such is life.

Gear4Guys posted another article I wrote about the differences between men and women. It's called Men & Meow Mix. Pop on over and have a read. It's a very short and light blurb on men's brains vs. women's. I hope it gives you a laugh today.

As for me, I'll go to work and then come home and re-write my article. I'll wait for my screenplay to arrive and be grateful that my friend is taking time out of her busy life to help me make my screenplay as good as it can be before I try to find an agent to rep it. I will recognize that re-writing is not a comment on my skills; it is simply a necessary part of the writing process and I must embrace it as such. And above all, never, never, never give up.

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