Once upon a time, I became a writer. For eight long and often discouraging years I wrote and submitted stuff. Mostly short stories. I dreamed and hoped and prayed of one day getting published. I gathered rejection after rejection after rejection. I cried and banged my head on the desk and kept writing and kept submitting.
Then one day I opened my email to find an acceptance letter. Somebody wanted to buy one of my stories! I almost couldn't believe it was true. I cried again for happiness. I danced and celebrated.
But the weeks started to go by and the time the editor said he'd contact me again passed. The website hadn't been updated in a while. I started to worry. I saw the magazine on a list of dead markets. I emailed the editor. He said sorry. He'd hoped to publish the rest of his inventory, but it wasn't happening. I was free to submit the story elsewhere.
I was crushed. Heartbroken. I wanted to give up.
I didn't. I submitted that story and all the others again and again and again. A few months later another magazine bought the story and in July 2003, I finally got to see myself in print. With an illustration even. And reviewers who'd never even met me said nice things about my story. Joy. =)
I'm not sure why I'm telling you this. Maybe it's just to remind myself how far I've come already. Because, frankly, this whole last week I have felt like giving up. Like it just isn't worth the effort.
But it is.
Today, I read this in the January 2011 Ensign (a magazine for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints):
"Sometimes we try hard to achieve something, but our own efforts, however great, are insufficient for the task. I know Heavenly Father can bless us for our faith and obedience with even greater blessings than we hoped for initially...My toil will not have been in vain."
And in another article: "You are here on earth at this time for a reason. You have what it takes. You have skills, knowledge, and natural talents given to you from God...Take these things that are yours and have a great life!"
And I read this blog post. It really hit home for me.
So, thank you, Lord for your tender mercies today. Tomorrow I'm going to jump back into this with both feet!