Thursday, August 2, 2012

Words of Encouragement

This week I conducted two workshop presentations to teen writers, all through the incredible PAWLP organization. It was not the workshop part that inspired me to write this post, it was the Q & A part at the end, when the kids asked me about being a writer and my book. Despite the workshops taking place in different towns, the questions were similar. One question in particular was the catalyst for today's post:

Was it easy to get your book published?

Anyone out there working towards a dream--no matter the dream--knows the answer to that.

My mother always says, "Nothing that's worthwhile doing is easy." She has said that since I've been a little girl, and she is so right.

I looked out into the sea of bright, hopeful teenage eyes, and I gave them an encouraging, yet realistic answer. "No, it wasn't easy. It was years of hard work and close to a 150 rejections, but I wanted to see one of my books published, so I never gave up." As much as I believe in positive thinking, I also believe in hard work. Dreams don't come true without both parts.

My words of encouragement today:

Learn from disappointment. Parse through the pain and find ways to grow towards your goal. Don't allow yourself to get stuck in the heartbreak. The choice you make right here, at this crucial moment, to power onward amidst the dark clouds of doubt, is what separates you from those who achieve their dreams and those who don't.

This is the hardest part - believe me - I've been there. 

Finally, make sure your hard work is the right hard work. Continuously ask yourself, Is what I'm spending my time on really and truly helping me towards my goal?

Never stop moving towards your dreams.

A little Zen for the dreamers out there.