Saturday, April 4, 2015

Winners never quit and quitters never win - or do they?

They say winners never quit and quitters never win. That's what I've always believed.

After reading the previous amazing post by fellow Novelnaut, Velda Brotherton. I decided to write a post on the subject of quitting as well because I think about it a lot, as many authors do.

Recently, a guest pastor at my church spoke on when it's time to quit. He said quitting makes sense, if your efforts do not bear fruit and you're exhausted, there is a right time to walk away. Well, sometimes the business of writing bears very little fruit, and it is definitely exhausting, yet we churn away at it and stay in the game. Does that mean we're riding through the rough times, staying positive about the future, and staying the course because we believe there really is a light at the end of the writing tunnel? I guess that's called faith, believing without seeing! Do we write to make a living or because it's our passion? Are we addicted to the process with hopes of one day making that list, signing that deal, the next book being the one to sell out, break records, end up optioned for a movie or TV show, etc., etc., etc.?
When do we know it's time to quit, because we understand that quitting does not mean we didn't win, but it means we can say we at least tried, and there are no regrets? But what about fueling your passion, and living out your dreams until they become reality? That can't happen if we give up? Would you be happy if you walked away from this business?
I know I've asked a lot of questions. I've done so because these are the questions I ask myself. I listened to that guest pastor and it really made me think, and honestly decide, that being exhausted without fruit was not the life I wanted to live. However, as you can imagine . . .  and still I write! Actually, I just thought of a new story angle this morning.
Hank Aaron struck out way more times that he hit the ball. Tyler Perry didn't give up when there were only a few people attending his stage plays. He kept at it. Oprah never stopped believing, and the reality of her dreams ended up being bigger than even she imagined.
As my agent says, "Yeah sure, this will be the last book. Until the next one!" And as Velda said, we should make a list of what we would do if we quit, and then tear it up, sit down, and get back to work.

Write on!


Liane Spicer said...

Ha. I ponder these questions almost on a daily basis. Sometimes I tell my critique partner that I'm done. He says: "No, you can't do that." And I know he's right, so I get back to work.

Charles Gramlich said...

More and more in the past few years, thoughts of quitting have surfaced. So far I've held them back. But sometimes maybe there is a time to let it go.