Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Muddy Flat

I think of spin class today.  I think of the muddy flat road we're told to experience.  It's not quite a hill.  But it's not easy breezy.  It's not enough to leave you choking for breath but it's enough to peak your heart rate and leave an ache in your legs. 

In this writing journey, I often feel as if we're all on the muddy flat for extended periods of time.  I hear these terrible stories, the kind that are supposed to inspire me or make me pump my fist in solidarity but, instead, leave me feeling sick. I wrote ten novels before my first got published!  I got 100 rejections before I landed an agent!  No one wanted to publish my book for years...then I won a Pulitzer!

I don't know.  Something about these stories makes the journey feel less like an uphill battle and more like a neverending muddy flat, tires trudging through the sludge.

Lately, I'm not interested in looking through this murky lens, feeling powerless as I let others determine my fate or watch others in my position get knocked down.

Because last night, I sat at my little desk, writing, and I met somebody new.  I put words together, at first clunky, smoothed them out, and thought they might not be porcelain, they might not be gold, but they'll do.  I felt the nervous excitement of a new world, its people stomping across the page. 

I was where I needed to be, all nestled up inside what it's really about.

And I thought, screw this stupid sludge, this off-road drool.  I'm not fixated on the muddy flat.  I am flying straight through.


  1. I'm with you! I'm flying straight through, too. :)

    Because those muddy flats stink.

  2. It is a little sad that other people having a hard time getting published is supposed to make us feel good. Personally I like the "I got my first book published right off" stories. I guess what we are supposed to learn is persistence.

  3. NICE! I love meeting someone new. Especially when you can make them whoever you want them to be.

  4. Boy, I think I'm well-aquainted with that muddy flat, and I'm so thankful that I hung in there and like you, pushed through. This is a wonderful post, Melissa! Thanks for the encouragement!