This morning, I get another rejection for this one novel that I just loved writing. I thought it was so clever, so unique, so compelling. I wanted everybody to read it.
I cry and cry. My children come around me and the little one says, “Mom, you should just write children’s stories. You’re so good at making stories for us.” And then the oldest one says, “You know it takes years to get a book published.” She’s licking a popsicle and nodding her head. She actually pats me on the back.
Here, have a lick.
My wise neighbor (the one who danced in the kitchen with me) tells me: “Don’t you dare say that you got a rejection letter. It’s a revision letter. Rejections are opportunities for revision.”
And my husband (the one who said, “Just because there’s space doesn’t mean you have to fill it) says: “Don’t you remember what Jack Nicholson said when he won his Oscar?”
He said, “I’d like to thank my agent who ten years ago said I had no business being an actor.”
I would like to thank my agent. The more I survive “revision letters” the more I get to the heart of why I write at all. I just have to, and I’ll revise until I get it right. Living with flair means I learn the art of revision.
Re-vision: seeing again, seeing new, seeing differently.
Isn’t that the core of living with flair? In small ways and large ways I’ll take a fresh look and reshape, not just my novel, but everything that makes up the narrative of my life. When it feels like rejection, I’ll take another look.