I am my younger self’s worst nightmare. I am proof that not all dreams come true -- even dreams you want so badly you can taste them.
I am proof that maybe they shouldn’t come true -- like that boy you wanted to marry so badly, but then you both grew up and you shudder at the thought of spending your life with him.
Years ago, I was driven to be a successful writer. I hoped my novel would go to auction, that my hard work, my very self, would be vindicated by a six-figure offer. Maybe then I’d be worth something.
My break came. Eight literary agents and four New York publishers asked to see my novel. Their rejections read similarly: “You need to draw your characters more vividly and put emotion on the page.”
These rejections were a mercy, because publishing would not save my soul or ease my sadness. I worked with an editor, rewriting the book. I worked out my craft, some painful memories, and dumped into a steady peace. Writing helped me find a work that allowed me to help young people.
I self-published my novel and sold five hundred copies. My email list is under 200, when successful authors boast thousands. But I still show up at the page, post things on my blog because it’s rewarding to be read -- even if my audience is small.
I’m Katie Andraski, and that’s my perspective.