Friday, August 20, 2010

Onward Through the Fog

You can quit.

You can always quit.

Writing is tough and you’ll have some days when you want to give up either because of rejection or some other disappointment or maybe because the words won’t come at all or maybe because only the wrong words or the almost right ones will come. A disappointment as thick as a London fog will set in around you.

You can always quit.

But what if Humphrey Bogart and Katherine Hepburn had said to hell with it in the African Queen (I’m a fan of old movies) and given up pulling that wreck of a boat through the swampy jungle? How many times could either or both of them have given up on that difficult journey? Once Bogart comes out of the water where he’s been pulling the boat and leaches cover his body. Perhaps metaphorically you feel like leaches are covering your body some days when you write but…It would have been easy for Humphrey and Kate to give up then. Oh yeah. They would have died ( well, their characters) in the middle of no-where which is certainly no place to die. But Kate forced them on. Humphrey forced them on. You have to do the same. So, push on campers. Plenty before us have faced much worse than a little literary disappointment. Finish your manuscripts. Suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. Write on.

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