Wednesday, June 7, 2017

IWSG Inspiration

 

My Dear Sillies,

For the past week, I've been away. Imagine getting a flat tire in a small town wherein you have no phone signal and there's no auto shop. In other words, it's been a long day. I'm home safely now, so all's good. And it was worth it - I was at a very nice writer's conference in the northeast corner of California (Modoc County).

For now, let's travel to a memory . . . With notebook in hand, I entered Pete's for our weekly writer's group meeting. What started as a group of eight had whittled down to three. At that time (approx two years ago), I'd just finished my first draft. I floated with an insecure confidence: Maybe undoubtedly or probably iffy and/or certainly I was possibly onto something worthy. My loyal writing buds would definitely see me through.

We sat at a small table in a downtown coffee shop for the usual discourse. 

"I need to tell you both," Pamela started, "I can't do this anymore. It's taking too much time. I have too many emotional things going on with the family, and the job, and my life's a mess. But I want to see your book, Robyn, when you've made all the corrections and polished it."

You're dumping me now? Sure, buy my book when it's published. For you, $100. An extra $50 for my autograph. "Well I guess I understand," I responded softly, verging on tears, "but I'm really disappoint---"

"Yeah, actually," Neil interrupted. "If Pamela's leaving the group, there's no sense in only the two of us continuing."  He proceeded to state that my story didn't work and he was tired of reading it.

"Why would I sit here and be criticized when you're both bailing on me? I have a book to finish." I grabbed my things, and stomped out. 

Writing paralysis struck and stuck for months. Pamela and Neil had become very close friends. Shock and despair mixed with utter insecurity about how to proceed.

Months or a year later, I don't know how I finished but I do know why: Perseverance. That's the key ingredient, right? Nothing else matters nearly as much.

This brings us to the present: Last week Acorn Publishing recognized Woman on the Verge as  MEMOIR OF THE YEAR (for 2016)! See seal on left side bar. Yippeee! I'm eternally thrilled and honored.

So my dears, PERSIST -- whether it's completing a novel or essay, or finishing a NY Times' crossword puzzle (I have much more luck with the former). Take breaks. But keep faith that you'll get there eventually. Unexpected rewards await your arrival.

Be good to yourselves, my friends.


51 comments:

  1. Wonderful, wonderful news. HUGE congratulations. My autographed copy is treasured.

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  2. That's awesome, Robyn! it deserved it. Heck with those two people. You don't need them - you have us.

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    1. Yes, my blog friends would never let me down like that. And now my new writing partner is so much better, nicer, brilliant, talented...(hint: shower, beer). How lucky I am.

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  3. Many congratulations, Robyn!! Super news.

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  4. Congrats! You succeeded despite of those two.

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    1. Best yet they are possibly reading this. They've followed my book success. Sweet karma occurred when I simply invited them to my book launch party. Despite their best efforts, I persevered. =)

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  5. OMG Robyn -- CONGRATULATIONS! Your book deserves it and so do you! I'm thrilled for you and your persistence.

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    1. Woohoo! I can practically hear your cheer. Much gratitude, Debra.

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  6. He actually said that? Wow. What a meanie head. Way to keep at it, and HUGE congrats. Well deserved.

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    1. It was so disturbing and odd, Crystal. Lots going on for those two that I strongly suspect had nothing or everything to do with my potential to publish a strong book. Yeehaw.

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  7. That is awesome indeed. Congrats. And yep, that is the way, ignore the negative nellies and keep on keeping on. Never know what shall dawn.

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    1. You never know, it's true
      Some will trip you
      Others lift you
      Regardless, perseverance sees you through.

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  8. CONGRATULATIONS! That is a well-deserved award for one of the funniest soul-baring books I have had the pleasure to read. Too sad that the Insecure Writers' Group's lasting accomplishment was to increase your insecurity rather than support you in your insecurity. Well, you showed them!

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    1. Thanks so much, Wilma. I may want to quote you.
      Thankfully, those local insecure writers are completely different from this wonderful blogland IWSG. As Alex said, I have all of you. And yeah, I showed them and intend to keep going with the "show and tell." Smiles.

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  9. Memoir of the Year? YAY!!!! CONGRATS!!!!

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  10. You're the Woman of the Year. Congratulations! Too bad my son wasn't around to fix that tire.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. Woohoo. Woman of the Year - an even higher honor. And why wasn't your son in the northeastern corner of CA yesterday, when I needed him most? Sheesh.
      Love.

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    2. He's been working a lot lately, which is good.

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  11. Congratulations on Memoir of 2016. I'm proud of you and your perseverance. Way to go! Ever onward - keep plugging along. It's worth it. Big hugs and chocolate celebration.

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    1. Big hugs back to you, Joanne. Note that I didn't return the chocolate. I'm selfish that way. Thanks so much, friend.

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  12. I couldn't be happier for you over this great news. Quite a feather in your cap.

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    1. It's an amazing title. I very happily can't believe it. Thank you, Stephen.

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  13. Gee, I was wanting to hug you with tears as you were being abandoned by your writing group and then I read about being awarded memoir of the year. Congratulations (and now I really need to buy your book before the price rises)

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    1. You're sweet, Sage. Actually, "Pamela's" husband hugged me shortly after she and "Neil" dumped me - I started to cry when talking with him about it. Now I'll take all the congratulatory hugs I can get. And no worries about the price rising. It only goes up to $100 for Pamela and Neil, $150 with my autograph.

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  14. That's amazing! Congratulations, Robyn! I'm so proud of you and so excited. Very well deserved. Awesome! Love you tons, my friend!

    Elsie

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    1. Thank you for sharing in my joy, darling. You were there for me through much of the process. I appreciate and love you loads too.

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  15. Memoir of the Year is excellent and you should send a Copy of this to Neal who probably complains and criticizes his own poop. A big congrats to you...you have earned it!

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    1. You never fail to send me into hysterical laughter, and I love you for it, Birgit. Much gratitude.

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  16. My enthusiastic congratulations on your book being awarded Memoir Of The Year. Excellence should be rewarded. You are on my long-arm shelf between Thurber and Benchley. In my own efforts down the years I've found writing can be a lonely business sometimes. Although published many times under various names, I feel the best forum is here, where I can write in retirement and still get a pension. This is how a gardener expresses admiration, Robyn. Your focus on perseverance has paid off bigtime, especially in the appreciation of your readers.

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    1. It's a mutual, magical energy. Virtual hugs and returned admiration, Geo.

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  17. The problem with writers' groups is that writing has never been a group activity. Congratulations on the award, Robyn.

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  18. I read your book in January of last year & LOVED it!!

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  19. Wow - that's fantastic. What an achievement. Well done. Very deserved. It was a great read. You must be very happy dear.
    Disappointment - the road to publication is pretty much paved with it. You can testify to that! It's heartbreaking... but....
    Perseverance - you got there. Good on you for not allowing those setbacks to ruin you. You did it. Congratulations dear. x
    Now you can retire lol.

    xo

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    1. I've one thing to do before I retire: sell one million copies.

      Thank you, dear, dear friend. xo

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  20. Hi Robyn - that's brilliant to read about -so glad Janie posted. Congratulations on your achievement - and the concept of Memoir-ish ... so pleased for you. Perseverance and continuing on writing is definitely the way to go - and this group is superb - lots of supportive friends here ... cheers and enjoy your success - Hilary

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    1. Thank you kindly, Hilary. Janie is a class act, one of the best. I really appreciate your having stopped by with enthusiasm for me.

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  21. To quote Bob Hatfield and Bill Medley, "You are my soul and my inspiration!"

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    1. It took two brilliant men to come up with that, and a third one to convey it on my blog. I'm liking my odds. Much gratitude, friend.

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  22. So happy for you! Congratulations! :)

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  23. I had to laugh out loud when you mentioned that Neil said your story didn't work and he was tired of reading it. It's like that person who breaks up with you and then has to passive-aggressively say on the way out, "You're ugly and I didn't like you, anyway."

    Stay classy, Neil.

    I have not gotten tired of reading your writing, nor do I foresee that happening.

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    1. Haha. Yeah, why pour salt into the wound like that? It's just mean. I don't think Neil is a mean guy - but he was done with my writing and the group. In that case, he should've been honest about it. I prefer honesty to passive aggressive insults.

      You always say the things I need to "hear." Thank you, good friend.

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  24. So much love to you!!! Very well deserved sweet girl. I am so lucky to have read it and posted comment review on Amazon .

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    1. Much love back to you, sweet Holli. Thank you.

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  25. That story deserves a standing ovation. Imagine if you stopped. You wouldn't have that beautiful seal over there. Good job! Thanks for the inspiration.

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    1. We must believe in ourselves even and especially when nobody else appears to, right? I think sometimes the fact is that people are threatened by our success so they act like meanies instead of adults. Well, neener, neener to them. Thank you, Lux. Smiles.

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