Saturday, May 25, 2013

BREAKING UP WITH THE PAST (HOLLY SCHINDLER)

It took seven and a half years of full-time effort to get my first yes.  I went through an especially tough time about four years into it.  A really, really bad time.  A sort of, "Am I really going to keep doing this?" kind of bad time.  And for a gal who never wanted to do anything but write, that was pretty darn bad.

Talking to a fellow writer recently, I tried to explain what got me through it.  And the best way I could think of to describe it was that I broke up with the past.  I broke up with the four years that had come before.  I broke up with every person and situation that had dashed my high hopes. And, as you always have to do at some point following every breakup, I said, "Aw, screw you, anyway.  I'll be just fine without you."

And I went back to work.

I had to nearly double the amount of time I'd already spent writing before one of my novels was acquired.  But there was something about what I'd done...after that breakup, I was in it for the long haul.  I'd dug in, and I wasn't letting go.

And man, am I glad I dug in.  I can't imagine a life without writing...
 



8 comments:

  1. I love the idea of breaking up with the past. I need to write my own Dear John letter! Thanks!

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  2. Breaking up with the past is a great way to put it, Holly. Thanks!

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  3. That's a great way to handle it, Holly, and a good lesson to take through life! Let go, persevere, and move forward!

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  4. This is a great philosophy. On my drawing table is a little quote that says, "Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin."
    I don't know where it's from (my aunt put it there) but I love it.

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  5. I think most writers experience that same sort of "am I really going to keep doing this?" thing at one time or another. You're living proof people can work through it.

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  6. This is great life advice, too, Holly. When I used to despair about what a bad mother I had been recently, I would pretend that I had just adopted my boys that day; they now had a brand new mother who admittedly did bear an uncanny physical resemblance to the old mother. . . That thought helped me through some tough parenting times.

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  7. I LOVE that, Claudia! So funny...

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  8. That letting go before digging back in can be so empowering, yes? Great post.

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