A guest post to motivate, encourage, and inspire…
My Year of Rejection
I am currently in the middle of what I have deemed my year of rejection. I only started writing two years ago. In 2016 I had a breakout year of success. Something about having nothing to lose when I first started writing propelled me forward. Words came easily to me and I had a lifetime of stories waiting to be unleashed. I marveled as I hit every milestone I set for myself in that first year. I received a few rejections, but the acceptances far outweighed them. I even told myself I liked getting the rejections because they proved I had nothing to lose. They really weren’t as bad as I made them out to be.
Despite my accomplishments, all through my first year of writing, I struggled with what many artists refer to as “imposter syndrome.” Despite accomplishing most of my goals that year I still hesitated to call myself a writer. I asked myself what it meant to be a writer. Was it someone who wrote a book or someone who went to school for an MFA? Was a writer someone like my brother who, for as long as he could write, has been telling and creating stories? I decided that a writer was anyone who called themselves a writer, but I didn’t believe it for myself.
In my year of rejection, I am facing this obstacle head on. It was easier to convince myself I was a writer when I received positive feedback on my writing, but it has been harder to believe in myself in the absence of affirmation. Each time a rejection hits my inbox I resolve not give up. It is in this space of uncertainty that I am being forced to truly mold the type of writer I want to be.
When I first started writing I needed the affirmation. I needed to know that people cared to hear my stories. As a quiet introvert, it was validating to know that people appreciated my voice.
What I’m learning this year is that as wonderful as it can be to have people respond positively to my writing, that isn’t ultimately why I write. I write to connect to the human experience. My healing comes from getting the stories out of my head and having the courage to share them. Even if only one person reads my writing, my stories will still see the light. So I continue to write and let my thoughts live on paper, knowing that my year of rejection is just a season, my writing can survive it, and I’ll always be a writer.
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