Creative KillJoys

Someone making you feel down about your writing or other art? You can be productive and joyful anyway. Check out this post.

A stranger emailed me, discouraged by their failed attempts to get published. An adapted excerpt of my response is below, in hopes it encourages you to keep going, no matter what:

After eight years of laboring over the text for Be a Goddess! , and equally sincere efforts on a manuscript previous to that, I was heartsick when both books were rejected. Be a Goddess! received 28 rejections!

But I kept on going.

Finally, Be a Goddess! was acquired by a publisher and became a bestseller. As such, it became widely available so could help a lot of people improve their lives. That was my dream.

Publisher after publisher said, “We don’t understand what you’re trying to do with this book,” when they saw the proposal for Share My Insanity: It Improves Everything, my self-help book that uses humor to show how divine madness can be integrated with chaos theory to create a better life for yourself.

Eventually, the book was accepted by a small house who totally understood the project. Almost as soon as it was released, it hit Amazon’s bestseller list.

If you believe in your art, believe in it. Don’t let anyone stop you. Good work often goes unrecognized. It’ll even be trashed by so-called supporters, so they can dominate your field.

Yes, we might become despondent, believing we can’t overcome the odds. It feels awful. Just awful. Hitting a lot of roadblocks can rob us of the drive, optimism, and other traits needed to strive toward our creative goals. Hitting a lot of roadblocks can fill us with various traits that keep us from striving. Take care of yourself when opposition has overwhelmed you. Give yourself love and self-acceptance. Reach out to others—and reach deep into yourself—for every bit of care you need.

And then pick yourself back up and move toward your goals again.

Find people who see your work’s value. Cleave to them. Let them help you remain productive and joyful.

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