Have you ever noticed how one thing generally leads to another, and not always in a good way, but if you wait long enough, and work hard enough, things usually come back around and then you usually can see that without the first series of things, nothing else would have turned out the way it did? Well, it does.
Years ago I had a contract for my first novel. It was with a small, start up publishing house, but I was a first time author and so excited that words like “new,” “inexperienced” and “small budget” didn’t mean much to me. Long story short, it did not end well. In fact, it ended so horrifically that I haven’t looked at that manuscript since and I stopped writing altogether for about three years. Then we moved, and I went back to school and my kids finished growing up and I got my degree and started teaching. Somewhere in there I started writing again, went to some conferences, got some writing experience, started the Serivilous Panerians and finished Rephaim.
Another thing I did at some point, though the exact time and date are lost to the mists of detail-addled memory, is decide that when I was ready to publish, it wouldn’t be through a traditional house. I had been burned once and dang it, I wasn’t lighting the match for another editor. I closed that door and nailed it shut.
Then Rai grew up and became a writer herself. Then we became members of the same writing group and she took some classes and wrote some really good stuff and got some experience of her own. She also got smart. So much so that now, when she says something about writing or life, I listen. I might not end up agreeing, but I listen.
The thing she said recently probably lands in the realm of the wise so I took note.
She said, “you can’t let one bad experience sour you on an entire industry.”
Hmmmm. True in writing, and likely just as true in life. How often have I reflected gratefully on the string of events that landed me, healthy, happy and blessed in the midst of my current situation? If it hadn’t been for those events, the good, the bad and the really weird inclusive, I wouldn’t be here. And I wouldn’t have this life. So, time to get out the pry bar maybe?
Any door we pass through may lead to scary, even dangerous, territory. I can’t let the fear stop me from moving forward. What about you? Is there a door you’ve closed that you may want to consider opening? While you’re thinking, could you hand me that agent listing/pry bar? I have a door that I need to un-nail.