Sunday, August 24, 2008

Tough Cookies

My son said this to me the other evening. I was lamenting something or another, a minor annoyance at the end of a long day. We were sitting beside one another on the couch and he turned to me without missing a beat. Tough cookies, he said.

When I stopped laughing and he had been put to bed with a sip of water and a firm tucking-in, I told the story to my husband and heard the expression again for myself. Tough cookies.

It's something I think that I needed to hear. For many reasons, but as this is a blog about writing it seems only fitting to note those involving literary endeavors. I've received a fair amount of rejections lately, most encouraging, asking for more work. But still, rejecting.

These are things that normally blip on my radar and disappear, I move forward quickly. Too many markets to dwell over the ones who have passed me over. I write new work, submit new work, the cycle continues.

The problem as of late has been my inability to focus and finish stories the I've started since returning from Kenyon. And so as the rejection slips arrive, I do not have new and shiny stories to send out into the world in the places of those passed by. I've let myself settle into a sloppy, undisciplined pattern of writing when the whim strikes and not fully committing to a schedule.

But in my son's quick little quip, I got all the suck-it-up-Mom that I needed. I sent out an email to my fellow Kenyon workshop participants and recruited someone to hold me accountable to be writing 3,000 words a week.

It has been two weeks and I have one finished first draft and began a story that seems to be meandering somewhere longer. A novella perhaps? I can't be bothered yet, I'm just happy to be writing again.

On a random, it's late and I'm rambling to avoid the very writing that I just wrote about note, I'm listening to
Pandora right now and digging Zach Weber, Words off of the album Daydreams. Very nice.

1 comment:

nova said...

Ah, I think I need someone to tell me just that on a monthly basis, at least.

I admire that you sought out a way, and someone to help you, be accountable to producing new pages. It really seems to be working already! It's all we can do, isn't it? Keep going and keep creating something new...