“Carol’s writing is delightful. Unfortunately…” Another rejection. If you are or aspire to be a professional writer you must acquire a thick outer covering. Or perhaps just a slick one where unsavory words slip right down your back and onto the ground behind you.
I’ve been writing professionally for over ten years. I’ve been published in this magazine and that one, and this website and that one. I’ve even contributed to and/or ghost written a book or nine. But still I haven’t published my very own book. The one that says “Carol Hatcher” on the front cover.
I’ve paid my dues, gotten an agent and written proposals. While everyone seems to love my work, I still get one closed door after another.
“We are moving in a different direction.”
“Carol’s platform isn’t large enough.”
“We already have something too similar.”
To tell the truth, I’ve considered quitting altogether on more than one occasion. But the desire to quit always leads me back to the same question.
“Why do I write?”
What made me get started in the first place? The answer to that is simple. God did. He called me to write. As I drew closer to God in my personal quiet time, He spoke to me in such a powerful way, I was compelled to write down what I was learning. Then God opened doors for me to use that gift. At first my desire was to publish a book, but over time that changed. Now my greatest desire is changing lives through the power of God and His Word. (Don’t get me wrong, I still would love to publish a book. But it’s not my greatest desire.)
A wise friend once told me, “If God called you to do something, you don’t quit until God calls you to do that, too.” So when I receive rejections and am tempted to quit, I ask myself, “Why do you do it?”
And since the answer is always, “Because God told me to do it,” I keep moving forward. Maybe you aren’t a writer, but you can still relate. If the Lord called you to something, keep doing it until He calls you to do something else. Your idea of what God could do through you and God’s idea are not always the same. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9 NIV) You never know how your Heavenly Father might already be using you.
Why do I write? Because God called me to it.
Why do I write? Because I want to change the world for Him.
Why do I write? Because I want to encourage you to draw closer to Him.
And that is enough to keep those words flowing. So on the days when I feel discouraged and rejected, I must remember He is enough. He is enough for me.
“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.” Lamentations 3:24 NASB