We all go through periods of self-doubt. At those times kind words from an editor, an acceptance, or an unsolicited sale may be just the thing for restoring your muse. When your ego is battered, your pride is wounded, and you feel your writing life is under a dark cloud, it is difficult to believe things will ever get better. Sometimes you feel the postman is your enemy but at times he brings unexpected blessings and everything changes.
That happened to me this week. A letter arrived asking for permission to use a previously published poem in school tests, now, and over the next ten years! Wow! They offered me ten times more money than the original publisher and will pay me that amount each time they use it.
Oddly enough, the magazine they saw the poem in is closed to submissions and I am able to submit to them because the editor solicited me after seeing one of my poems in a different magazine. Then she looked for me on the Internet and contacted me. I was amazed since it had never occurred to me that such things could happen.
You're saying to your self, "Good for you! Why should I care about that?" The lesson here is always make your work the best it can be, you don't know who might be reading it. Don't let the rejections get you down, they are a normal part of the writing business. Don't give up on your muse during those dark times when she seems to be hiding out. If at all possible don't sell All-Rights and you will be able to sell a work over and over again. Be prepared for the unexpected.
This could happen to you.....try to remember that the next time you are feeling inadequate or unworthy and are tempted to give up. Look for the silver lining! Maybe your cloud won't be quite so dark and gloomy next time.
(c)Sharon A. Soffe 2005