Whatever You Do, Don’t Settle

I meant to post this yesterday for a nice start to the week, but obviously that didn’t happen. So here it is, one day late.

I recently had the chance to hear some authors speak about writing young adult novels. Not only was it informative, it was encouraging too. Hearing how people get published always inspires me, so I wanted to share one story with you.

Stephanie Perkins, author of Anna and the French Kiss, was one of the authors there. Starting out, I didn’t know much about her, but pretty soon she had me hooked because her story is applicable for those of us struggling to break into the writing industry.

Stephanie graduated with a degree in Creative Writing, but when she graduated she got a job at Michael’s. Talk about a bummer! There were no opportunities to use her writing skills there and she was miserable. So she found a new job at a library–a writer’s heaven! Even though it wasn’t her dream of getting published, it was the second best option. But she was still miserable.

Instead of wallowing in her misery and eventually settling for second best, Stephanie took action. She would get home from her library job, sleep a couple hours until her husband came home, write all night, sleep a couple more hours, and then go to work. Yes, she became the grumpy librarian. But you know what? It paid off. She has been published numerous times and has been asked to speak at various places.

So the point of that story is this: you can do it. As long as you believe in yourself and push yourself, you can do it. And this isn’t just for writing. It can be for anything. Whatever your dream is, don’t give up on it because the road looks hard. Sure, it may be tough. You may experience rejection. But keep going.  Don’t settle for second-best. It would be easier, but you wouldn’t be as happy. Remember that even the greats like Stephen King and James Patterson experienced rejection and probably thought about settling at some point in their journey. Now look where they are.

So to keep the warm-fuzzies going, post a comment sharing how the going got rough but you pushed through and made it to the other side. Someone else might just need a little encouragement right about now.


2 thoughts on “Whatever You Do, Don’t Settle

  1. Wow, great story! I’ve found myself listening to authors speak about their struggles because for quite some time I went through the same ones, with rejection after rejection from literary magazines (I write poetry, so the path to publication is different, but just as hard, I’m sure!). One video I watched was Elmore Leonard talking about how to become a writer. His answer? WRITE. He said he woke up every morning and treated it like a career. He wrote for 8 hours a day, because writers write, and if he wanted to become a writer, he knew he’d have to write. And he did. That’s how he became the acclaimed author he is today. I totally agree with you. Settling is a big no-no. “The desire to quit is greatest just before you reach success.” So always write one more word, and always submit one more time. No one can stop you forever!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s