I'm starting a new book today with that as the title. "The Strength To Stand Up. Memoirs of an Unemployed Man." People have been hounding me to put my ordeal into words, so I'm going to, with the specific bent on being the ANTI-"Secret" book.
In case you're not familiar with it - "The Secret" is a book that started a big craze centered around getting what you want. Some of it made sense to me, some of it seemed like snake-oil salesmanship. "You can have anything you want if you just buy my book so I can have anything I want!"
It centers around the concept of quantum physics, which basically says we're all made up of the same matter and therefore all connected and therefore manipulated by primal forces. Once we learn to be positive, think positive, etc., we draw those forces towards us and BOOM, instant happiness.
Except it doesn't always happen. Which leads the reader to think "What the heck am I doing wrong? I must not be thinking positively enough!"
I'm bringing this up now because there's nothing more disheartening than rejection letters, whether they're form letters, a nice personalized note, or no response at all. It leaves us thinking that there's something WRONG with us or our query letter. While the latter may need revisions (see my side bar over there), there's nothing that we're doing WRONG or anything WRONG with us for being rejected.
What we need is not to be found in a book, or a blog, or some "secret". It's internal to each and every one of us, and it's different for each of us. It's the drive and the strength to STAND BACK UP. I've learned the hard way over the past nine months that life will knock you on your keister without a moment's notice at any time. Things you hadn't thought about for years may suddenly go wrong. And that's just the way life is. We don't know why it happened, there's nothing you can do to avoid the next big thing. All you can do is recognize your own strength.
So when you get that rejection letter from someone you thought for SURE was going to be your agent, or you've followed the Secret and STILL don't have representation, just remember your own strength. You can stand up again.
I'm starting a new book today with that as the title. "The Strength To Stand Up. Memoirs of an Unemployed Man." People have...
Great time had at the SCBWI conference on Saturday! And a big hello to my friends from that conference who've hopefully joined us here....