A woman from my writing group in Portland just got a book deal. I'm thrilled for her and not surprised. I've had the honor of reading parts of the manuscript in workshop with her. Many of the women in this group have had work published; they've won prizes. They are all ambitious and motivated and they work hard. They submit their work. A lot. I kind of sit at the periphery of this group since most of them live in Portland. We usually gather together about once a year. I am the only poet among them. But here I sit, hiding behind my blog and (still) being afraid to take myself seriously as a writer.
I've had enough therapy to understand why that might be. I've also thought a lot about the way some people only think writing is valuable or good if it gets the validation of publication. Now that I work in publishing, I know it's not that simple. Not by a long shot. So many factors affect what gets published in a given moment in time, of course. A few of them have to do with quality.
But still, writers want to connect with readers. This writer wants to connect with readers. Which is a very long winded way of saying that I'm going to be sending stuff out this year. Stuff that I've been working on for a long time, work I don't share on social media. I'd say wish me luck, but want I really want you to wish for me is to believe in myself and to keep going.