Monday, November 16, 2015

You Only Fail if You Quit by Marianne Evans

Marianne Evans
Did I ever tell you about the moment I became a ‘professional writer’?

I had written a contemporary romance and after writing ‘The End,’ I was excited to see where an attempt at publication might take me. Within weeks I learned about Romance Writers of America, and discovered they had a chapter in Detroit.

Sign me up!

Soon after joining the chapter, I found out GDRWA would be hosting it’s bi-annual conference, Tapping the Source. I couldn’t wait. There would be break-out sessions where I could learn from talented and successful authors as well as a critique session where an agent would offer feedback on ten pages of my manuscript (pre-submitted so she could read and comment beforehand).

That's when reality set in.

My critique session began, and…to put it politely...my submission was slaughtered. She liked nothing about it and condemned line after line. Her concluding words were, “This will never get published, but at least you can say you wrote a book.”

Added bonus? This verdict was delivered in front of eight other people. I have no idea how I held it together during the lunch break that followed.

But from there, the decision was mine. I could roll over and quit. I could surrender as a failure, or I could get busy making my publishing dreams come true, no matter what that agent had to say.

I joined a critique group. I attended workshops and conferences. I networked with other writers and discovered I wasn’t alone, that the pathway to publication is paved by thousands of broken hearts that mended and persevered.

20+ books later (and the book that agent decried became my second sale to Kensington Publishing) I’m glad I stayed true to the call God gave me, the dream He placed in my heart to create a ministry meant to uplift, encourage, and highlight the greatest gift of all. Love.

If you’re curious, here’s what inspired me to write this post today. Check out this lovely lady on a subway in New York City. Does she look familiar? This is a young Meryl Streep, and here's the story behind this photo, in her own words, via her Facebook page:

"This was me on my way home from an audition for King Kong where I was told I was too "ugly" for the part. This was a pivotal moment for me. This one rogue opinion could derail my dreams of becoming an actress or force me to pull myself up by the boot straps and believe in myself. I took a deep breath and said "I'm sorry you think I'm too ugly for your film but you're just one opinion in a sea of thousands and I'm off to find a kinder tide. Today I have 19 Academy Award nominations.”

Thanks for the reminder to persevere, Meryl, and to not let others have the last say when it comes to your calling and your dreams. 

After all: You only fail if you quit.


Click to tweet!

You only fail if you quit ~ Meryl Streep

The pathway to publication is paved by broken hearts that mended, and persevered.

Don't let others have the last say when it comes to your calling and your dreams.

*****

Marianne Evans is a multi-award-winning author of Christian romance and fiction with over twenty titles to her credit. Her hope is to spread the faith-affirming message of God’s love through the stories He prompts her to create.

Readers laud her work as: ‘Riveting.’ ‘Realistic and true to heart.’ Devotion, earned the prestigious Bookseller’s Best Award from Greater Detroit RWA as well the Heart of Excellence Award from Ancient City Romance Authors. She has also earned wins for Best Romance from the Christian Small Publisher's Association and the Selah award for best Novella.


Happily married and the mother of two, Marianne is a lifelong resident of Michigan who is active in a number of a number of Romance Writers of America chapters, most notably the Greater Detroit Chapter where she served two terms as President.

*****



All she wants for Christmas is her Master’s Degree. All he wants is a one-way plane ticket back to Los Angeles. 

Tiffany Zelling’s mission is to become a crisis therapy counselor using specially trained animals as comfort tools. She's focused on reaching the end of her school career, and nothing will stand in her way—not even a fantasy-world attraction to colleague Mitch Alexander. 

After a year as interim Director of East Coast Operations Mitch's tenure has been a resounding success. Now, he’s set to return to California and lay claim to a well-deserved promotion. He can’t wait to leave behind the cold and snowy darkness of Manhattan, but when corporate bullying and a massive snowfall throws him together with Tiffany Zelling, Mitch wonders if heading west is his best future. 

As two hearts build a pathway to love, goals shift and evolve. But as Christmas joy and hope move through the streets of New York, critical decisions must be made. Can their lives truly meld? Can Christmas at Tiffany’s be God’s answer…for them both?

Purchase at:  Amazon  ~  Pelican Book Group

14 comments:

  1. What a great post! Thank you for this encouragement. Every writer needs to hear this every day as the path is indeed not easy!

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    1. #TRUTH, Terri! Thanks for stopping by, and I'm so glad you enjoyed the post. It's a wonderful story in hindsight, but at the time, a part of my spirit shattered bled - like I'm sure Meryl's did, too. <3

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  2. Awesome testimony! Without the knowledge of who we are in Christ and our greater purpose, people may try to derail our progress. Thank you for sharing. I am encouraged to continue pursuing my passion for writing.

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    1. Tina, I'm so glad to hear that!!!! Persevere!!!!!! <3 God bless, and so glad you stopped by!

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  3. Thanks for this encouraging post, Marianne! Hugs, friend.

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    1. Thanks, Annette!! Hugs right back to you! I sometimes struggle with what to write for my SW posts - but when I saw this story on Facebook, this column couldn't write itself fast enough. I hope it helps a few of those writerly 'broken hearts' to heal!! xo <3

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  4. So encouraging to hear about Meryl's journey. It only takes that one person willing to take a risk on someone. Knowing it is God's call on my life keeps me going on this long and frequently discouraging journey. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. You're very welcome! The story touched my heart very much, and triggered memories of my own 'ugly' moment as an author-to-be. And how true that God provides the call that keeps us all going! Be blessed, Linda - and thanks for the visit!!

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  5. Thanks for your encouraging words, Marianne! I appreciate you sharing your personal story - and Meryl Streep's experience was interesting too! If we give up, we'll never know what "could have been." ;-)

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    1. Thanks, Dawn! I appreciate you!!! I'm always amazed by the way God can take a seeming 'failure' and turn into a blessing. <3

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  6. Marianne, this is a riveting post that shows what perseverance can do with writers, actors and anyone else! Meryl Streep is beyond an actress, she is an icon that shows perseverance at it's best! Kudos to her and to you for writing such amazing books!
    Rebecca

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    1. Rebecca, I agree 100%. :-) You're a God-send, a true angel of encouragement whom I treasure. Thanks for your visit, and for all the ways you support and encourage people!!!! xo <3

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  7. WONDERFUL post! So glad you didn't quit!!!
    PamT

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    1. Awww, thanks Pam!! I appreciate that very much! <3 xo

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