What Keeps Me Going

2018 was a tough year for a lot of us. I know it was for me. There were plenty of mornings I stared at my lofty list of goals and asked myself, “Why am I wasting my time?”

I persisted with my writing and my freelance business, not because I was determined or smart or brave, but because I didn’t know what else to do with myself. It felt like I would never really move forward. And when I did, I wondered if the success was just a fluke.

But one of the best parts of hanging out with other writers is that I get to watch all of you move forward, too.

Here are some of the amazing things I watched you do in 2018:

  • Publish first books (or second or third books)
  • Find agents
  • Stand up on shaky legs to read at open mics
  • Enter contests for the first time

Many of these achievements took years. I’m going to say that again–YEARS.

I saw some of you fail, pick up the broken pieces of your dreams, and rebuild. I watched you realize your old dreams didn’t fit anymore and begin to shape new ones. I heard you share your struggles with more honesty and grace than I ever could.

So, inspired by you, I kept slogging to the keyboard even on days when I would rather have dined on cockroaches. I sat down to scribble poems when I didn’t think there was any poetry left in me (and I always found I was wrong). I sent out one more pitch, asked for one more referral, tweaked my website one more time.

And as I slogged forward, this is what I told myself:

“If [insert your own name here] can do it, I can, too.”

When I came to the end of the year, I realized I had moved forward. Farther than I’d thought. Thanks to you, this tough year was also a good year.

I can’t wait to see what we’re all going to accomplish in 2019.