Tag Archives: Don’t Stop Before The Miracle

Day 223: what if you didn’t stop?

11 Aug

Today I cried.
Not sobbing, heaving kinds of tears.  More like a deep breath with a big sigh followed by waterworks.

They gathered in the corners of my eyes while reading the last few paragraphs of this article from MORE Magazine:  Kathryn Stockett’s ‘The Help’ Turned Down 60 Times Before Becoming a Best Seller

Turned. Down. 60. Times.
That’s brutal.  That is unbelievable.  That’s some kind of miracle to keep pushing through rejection letter after rejection letter.

But, it’s not new news to me.
It sounds so familiar.

I am one lucky girl, to spend my working days around Debbie Phillips with Women on Fire.  If you ever have the chance to spend some time with Debbie, you, too, will hear what I do all the time:  “Don’t Stop Before The Miracle.”

Debbie reminds me of this Marianne Williamson saying all the time.  Don’t Stop Before The Miracle.  It could be a ground rule, or an operating principle, or even gospel, during our working days. (I actually wrote about it on Day 88)

So, this concept, you see, is not news to me. 
I know the special magic formula on NOT giving in, pushing through, keeping at it.  It is ingrained in my psyche.  It is also Debbie’s continuous support and gentle reminder of that miracle that helps me write everyday on this blog.

But I cannot imagine receiving 60 rejection letters.
I get to play it safe here in Blog-O-Land.  I can write and write and write (EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.) but I don’t have to face rejection letters.  I just push a button, and voilà!   Published.

But Kathryn Stockett, she is the real deal.  She served her time, paid her dues to the Rejection Fairy  — and in the end, showed us that we can live with rejection affection and still come out on top.  Actually MORE than on top!

In Kathryn’s own words:

In the end, I received 60 rejections for The Help. But letter number 61 was the one that accepted me. After my five years of writing and three and a half years of rejection, an agent named Susan Ramer took pity on me. What if I had given up at 15? Or 40? Or even 60? Three weeks later, Susan sold The Help to Amy Einhorn Books.

And, that question – WHAT IF – is what I hold in my heart tonight. 
WHAT IF Kathryn had given up at letter #15, or #40, or #60.  We would have all missed out on her story, on her unique characters and their charm, and ultimately her gift to the world.

Thank you Debbie, for continuously reminding me of THE MIRACLE.
Thank you Kathryn, for showing us (quite amazingly) that we can do anything we set our minds to and the miraculous power of not giving up.

And, of course, for making me cry.
Because, today, while I did cry, my tears were not of sorrow.
They were of inspiration and appreciation of how one woman made her miracle happen.

Give in to the shame of being rejected and put your manuscript—or painting, song, voice, dance moves, [insert passion here]—in the coffin that is your bedside drawer and close it for good … Or you could do what this writer did: Give in to your obsession instead.

Here’s to all of our crazy, undying, deserved obsessions hiding out in bedside drawers and tucked away in boxes.

WHAT IF they saw the light?
What miracle could they become?

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