Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It's not me, it's you

A few months ago I came across a website of Caribbean prose and poetry. The work was intriguing, the imagery was colourful, deep and full of innuendo; one could read between the lines between the lines. It struck a chord with me because it was the kind of writing that I had read in my high school Caribbean literature classes; this was the type of writing that had been held up to me as good writing. I wanted to belong, and so I laboured, forced some words on to the page, submitted them and held my breath.

Well, let's just say that my name is not among the list of authors in their latest publication. It was a difficult and important lesson for me. After going through all the emotional phases associated with rejection, I realised that my exclusion was not a reflection of my talents as a writer. I am generally a light-hearted person, quick to see the humour in every situation. I am not saying that I can only write one thing, but I am best at writing quick moving prose with witty dialogue. I cannot write what I am not, and when I try, I will be called out as an imposter. My challenge now is to recognise that I can make an important contribution writing what I enjoy!


Charles Gramlich said...

It's sometimes very tought to write outside your comfort zone. I enjoy doing it, but even then I like to try to bring my strenghts into that new area. Perhaps you should try your pieces elsewhere too, though. Do not give up on them too quickly

Liane Spicer said...

This is a very subjective business we're in and rejection is part and parcel of it. Shouldn't stop you from expanding into other kinds of writing if you feel the urge.

Jewel Amethyst said...

A rejection doesn't invalidate your writing skills or potential. It just says people look for different things. One agent still bemoans the fact that she rejected Tom Clancy's "Hunt for Red October" because she thought it wouldn't fly with readers. It made millions and is considered a classic.