The talks in church this past Sunday were all about adversity. And it got me thinking... I haven't had a whole lot of adversity in my life.
Now before you snort in derision or even throw food at me, I haven't exactly had it all. I've lived a fairly middle-class life. Growing up our houses were all big enough to fit seven kids, but not mansions. I did a lot of thrift-store shopping but my mom made sure I never wore clothes with holes in them. We had an in-ground pool in three of the houses I lived in, but I never got a car until I could afford to buy one myself (age 20). My parents are very frugal and I grew up that way.
But, I've never had to deal with major illness, poverty, tragedy, etc. Even death hasn't been all that prevalent in my life until recently.
I realized that one of my adversities is not succeeding. Writing is fun. But there's that voice in my head that says, you suck, you'll never be a good writer, you'll never get published, no one wants to read your stuff, this is too hard just quit... that's adversity. One of the speakers in church talked about how this world is a world of instant gratification. And I thought, nah- I don't expect anything instantly, I don't expect things to be handed to me. And then I thought- wait, do I?
It shames me to admit that when I finished my first draft of Daze and Knights I thought, I did it. I'm done. Now I'm going to be a bestseller.
Man, was I stupid.
I've learned since then that this is not easy. That writing one draft of a book does not an author make. That it is a hard road and no matter how much I work and work at it, the stars may never align in my favor. I may never be published. I may never be a bestseller.
So do I just quit?
Heck no. Because now that I'm facing a challenge in the face, I'm not going to bow out, slink away, or hide out in shame. I'm going to look my adversity in the face and say, BRING IT. I will last. I won't give up. I will work, work, work at this.
I had a motivator song before I started writing Daze and Knights. It was Simple Plan "When I'm Gone". Here are some lines (from the two verses) that really spoke to me, because I was afraid they WERE me and I didn't want them to be me.
I look around me, but all I seem to see
Is people going nowhere, expecting sympathy
It's like we're going through the motions
Of a scripted destiny
Tell me where's our inspiration
If life won't wait
I guess it's up to me
Procrastination running circles in my head
While you sit there contemplating
You're wound up left for dead
Life is what happens
While you're busy making your excuses
Another day, another casualty
But that won't happen to me