Joining in with the online discussion on the book “On Being A Writer” by Ann Kroeker and Charity Singleton Craig. Today we are working through Chapter 6: Send.
Newspaper print laid out on the table, cutting and pasting the articles into their place. In High School, I spent much of my time on our school’s newspaper. It was a way for me to write articles and share my love of writing in another way. After high school and college, while at seminary, I joined the Persistent Voice. The Persistent Voice is a newsletter that is “an ongoing conversation between men and women at Wartburg Seminary; Dubuque Iowa that reaches across the world.” As a member of the staff of the Persistent Voice, I had several poems and articles published. I gained more writing, editing, and publishing skills.
However, I never though much of having those items published because I was on the staff and was a student at the seminary. After while, I got braver and started submitting writing material to other places. I submitted a poem to poetry.com for their poetry anthology. I was pleasantly surprised when I received a letter saying they would like to publish my poem in their anthology. I purchased a copy of the anthology to share with my friends and family. (You can find that poem here: Tribute to New York Rescue Workers)
Over the years, while serving in Minnesota, I began submitting my work to a few literary contests. I often would ask my friends and family for their input. I would carefully select my submission and email it off. The waiting was always the hardest part. Often times when I saw the submission place in my email “from” line, my heart would skip a beat as I clicked on the email to open it. My eyes would scan the email to see what they thought of my piece. Every time it was rejection. One can only experience rejection so many times, so every time my heart and ego became a little more deflated.
I have learned to pick myself up, dust myself off and keep writing. Last April, I was out with some colleagues when one of them asked a question. I popped onto my work email to check out the information for them. As I was looking for that email, another email caught my eye. I quickly found the information we needed and then I went back and read the other email that had caught my eye. It was from a respected blog that I read daily asking if they could republish one of my blog posts on their site. I replied that indeed they could republish it. I can’t even tell you how giddy and excited I was. Several of my seminary friends and colleagues have had their pieces published on this blog too. It was finally MY TURN! (Living Lutheran: You are Seen)
And, suddenly, I didn’t feel so scared about hitting that send button.