We’ve talked a lot about the difficulties that come with a writing career. With the market changing as it has the last couple of years, rejection and disappointment has become an even bigger part of our reality. In some ways, all the rejection makes success feel that much better. In others, it feels like a punch in the gut after running a marathon. Why does it have to be so hard? Talented writers who are penning wonderful books with dedicated agents and supportive publishers still often face challenges making it all work.
So, let’s all just give up now, right? I mean, did you read the piece in The Paris Review about the writer who approached Philip Roth in a deli on the Upper West Side with his just-published novel, and was told he should quit while he was ahead? That’s not the most inspiring story to share with our blog readers.
But this one is. Perhaps you’ve heard of Elizabeth Gilbert, bestselling author of Eat, Pray, Love, one of the biggest books of, well, all time. She read the Paris Review piece and has something to say to Roth, and about being a writer. Let’s just say she puts a more positive spin on the subject than Roth did. It’s entertaining and hopeful, and pretty funny.
So while the gloom and doom scenarios about publishing abound, and all of us in the business will face inevitable rejection (repeatedly), writing and the business that surrounds it will always be a place we can go to find creative energy and inspiration in the art of creating something from nothing. And how many jobs can you say that about? Not many so chin up, keep writing, and welcome to the club!