I replied, “But you don’t understand, I have a platform.”
But they didn’t answer because they couldn’t hear me – even though I waved my hands wildly and hit my forehead with my fist. And if I really did respond to their email, I’m sure I’d be given the scarlet letter for new authors – a big letter ‘S’ for stalker, also known as ‘S’ for spam.
So I looked out my window and decided to speak to the tree that was graciously hanging on my every word. I gently pushed the curtain back so he won’t miss any of my speech.
I began, “My platform is me. I mean my platform is embracing adversity. If you read my book, my platform is clear. Hmmm.. Shit, maybe I don’t have a platform.”
Ahh… self doubt found its way into my heart again. Self doubt is a frequent visitor of many aspiring authors like me. Realizing I was not alone, I said to myself, “If you let self doubt win, then you lose. It’s that simple.”
I stood up to show the tree that I was serious now. “Look, I was given lots of hurdles; an alcoholic parent, abuse and poverty but I’m standing strong on the other side. I always thought I was so different and I longed to be the same. First I longed to be part of the normal-kid-club and then I longed to be part of the normal-mom club. You know, the ones that have it all figured out.”
The glare of the sun interrupted me. “Most of us don’t have it all figured out, you know.”
“Exactly!” I said as I threw my arms in the air. “If you know someone that has it all figured out I would bet you don’t really know them.”
The tree shook a leaf off toward me and said, “So what’s your point? You’re platform sounds more like a therapy session.”
My point is that we all know how it feels to be different. We all have our own struggles and we don’t always have the power to overcome them. I am saying, stand strong, be different, be yourself and don’t give up. My family was weird and screwed up as many familes are. That's why people relate to my story. I'm their sister, mother, daughter or friend. They will cry with me, laugh with me and in the end they will feel there is just one more person in the world that understands.
Individuality and empowerment through acceptance of adversity.
For writers in the midst of query and rejection letter hell, I say you are not alone. But you have a choice to make.