I’ve written and chatted a bit before about my latest novels in progress and rejection in the querying world. My latest journey into querying has resulted in 12 rejections so far, which I’ve learned with time is just a drop in the bucket. I’ve interacted with people on social media who have faced hundreds of rejections. I honestly don’t know how they have the willpower (and maybe the chutzpah) to continue at that point. They are both my heroes and a source of my guilty curiosity.
As I’ve jokingly told my husband, I’ve accidentally entered two career realms where I face mainly criticism and underappreciation for my work: teaching, and writing. Hopefully someday I’ll develop the steel wool exterior of my dreams to negate all of the negative energy directed toward me (or maybe bounce it off into a black hole). As it is, I’m a helpless empath who cries at both the sad and perfect endings to books and movies, so the idea of me developing a seriously hardy exterior is laughable.
Recently, I’ve been dealing with another tough experience. If you enjoy misery (teasing, mostly), you can read my most recent reflections on my cancer journey here. I’m sure I’ll share about this latest bump in the road on here at some point in the future, though I need a little more time at the moment.
I was, however, talking about it with a friend in person over the weekend, and I told her, “Surely this will all just make me stronger.”
She sort of shook her head and replied, “It will make you more empathetic.”
She’s right, and that’s exactly what all of my difficulties have done already. And maybe that’s why those darn endings get me every time. And why they get to me even worse now after the cancer.
The tough part is, that empathy is exactly why I want to publish my novels. I read a novel about a young adult cancer journey from someone who hasn’t been there, and while I appreciated the attempt, I longed to hear from someone who has lived the journey. Someone like me. I know others in my shoes feel the same way, and I want to speak with them from my own lived perspective. In a more fun way with crazier characters and exciting sub-plots, of course, but you know what I mean. I want other young adult cancer survivors who I never met to pick up my book and say, “She sees me. She’s been here. Someone understands me.”
Maybe that will make them cry at the ending, too, but I hope they will be happy tears.
If you want to read my plan to make this journey to publishing peaceful, you can take a little walk with me below. 🙂