The End and the New Beginning

You have to know how to accept rejection and reject acceptance.” – Ray Bradbury

“Rejected pieces aren’t failures; unwritten pieces are.” – Greg Daugherty

“It’s okay.” -Me

Well it’s December which means the year is nearly over. For some that brings about panic as they try to get done all they set out to do this year. For others however this is a sigh of relief. I fall into the latter category.


This year challenged me in a writerly sense (shut up, it’s a word). From my job description changing which deprived me of the normal hours of writing to a mental health crisis that left me devoid of any intention of crawling into my usual safe space of ink and words.

Also at the beginning of the year I was offered a deal to have my book published by a small press. All was looking good and then…well, nothing happened. But to be honest if I had signed a contract there’s no way I would have the book ready.

Writers get used to rejection and heartaches. It’s part of the job requirements. So I decided to take these setbacks and see what I could learn from them.

I learned how to make better use of my time. Spare moments are now my best time to write. Taking notes at a stop light, a few paragraphs at lunch, anywhere and anytime.

I learned to keep writing. Art and writing helped my daughter and me get through her mental health episode. Sharing creativity brought us even closer, and we learned how to speak through our collective creativity no matter how difficult the conversation may be.

Finally I learned that I can forge my own destiny. So much of my time and energy had been placed in the idea of being traditionally published that I was blinded to other avenues to get my story out. From what I heard from agents and publishers they really enjoyed it but had no idea how to sell it. So why can’t I just worry about that part? If I can survive this year then being passionate about my writing and figuring out sales should be easier.

Those are just a few things I’ve learned from this year. Have you learned anything about yourself? Just remember it’s okay. You’ll be okay.

Matt Williams is an avid reader, a collector of many pens, an ever improving father of two, and an all-around fanboy. When he’s not wrestling with cats or a long commute you can find him hunkered down writing something imaginative. He’s working on publishing his first book Beyond Here, a middle grade story involving a coma and a singing flower with a bent stem sometime in 2016, along with a few projects with his other daughter.