Life Coach Magazine

To Prove Or Improve Your Writing?

By Writerinterrupted @writerinterrupt

Snoopy WriterMy latest manuscript is what agents call “dead.” That means every major CBA publisher has rejected it. Sure, some called it “charming” and rejected it because they’ve already acquired a modern-day princess story while others claimed to want to work with me if only they had openings in their fiction lines. But that doesn’t change the fact that my manuscript is now dead.

I love this story. It’s the kind of book I devour, and were it a meal, I’d lick the plate clean. I spent countless hours cooking it up, and I’m so sad I can’t serve it on a silver platter for others to feast upon.

The above analogy got me thinking about one of my favorite cooking shows: Chopped. So many of the contestants claim they want to win to prove themselves. And every time, I’m like, “Nooo! You don’t need to prove yourself. You cook because you love to cook. This is a chance for you to learn to cook better. To improve.”

So I ask myself, “Is my goal to prove or improve?” If my goal is to prove myself, then having my manuscript declared dead is an obvious failure. If my goal is to improve, then the hours spent writing a dead story have not been wasted.

  • I’ve always wondered if I could write a book in a month, and now I know I can.
  • I cried along with my characters and got a powerful lesson on self-sacrifice from their experiences.
  • It was my first romantic suspense novel and opened up a whole new genre for me.
  • My family supported me like never before and my children offered the sweetest encouraging words when I told them I didn’t find a publisher.
  •  I get to be an example of perseverance for them.

If my goal was to improve my writing, then I’m successful. My next book will be better because of what I’ve learned here.

Of course, I’d rather have the book published. Who wouldn’t? But the song I heard yesterday reminds me of what my motive needs to be. “Let my life be the proof of Your love.” I shouldn’t write to prove my worth but rather to be living proof of God’s love.

So I’m handing over my dead manuscript to the Author of Life. If/when he resurrects it, then He’ll get all the glory. Because I’ve got a lot more improving to do.

Do you write to prove or improve?

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