Wednesday, November 10

The Bad Stuff Is Easier To Believe...

You know that scene in Pretty Woman, when Edward and Vivian are in bed and talking about their her past? She says something that I think is kind of profound and very true for everyone: He asks why she let her mother's abuse shape her and Viv says, "The bad stuff is easier to believe." I can totally relate to that.

I wasn't an abused child by any stretch of the imagination, but it has always been so much easier to believe the teachers or coaches who said I wasn't quite good enough or those Mean Girls who lived to make other people's life he!!. Self-esteem is a funny thing, and yet even in the midst of the not-good-enoughs I was still doing my own thing. Still kind of oblivious, thanks to the love and support of a core group of people. At 16 I got a job at a local radio station, by 18 I had my own show on Sunday mornings and that led me to be a news director and then a television reporter and now a freelance writer and aspiring romance novelist.

I think the key is surrounding yourself with people who believe in you. Not 'Yes People' because they can do more damage than good. People who will shoot straight with you, who encourage you to do more, be more, who listen when you're down and help build you back up when something isn't quite right. I've been lucky to have several people like that in my life. People who will make the Thank You list when I sell that first book: my mom, who doesn't like all the sex in my books but still encourages me to go for my dreams. My first writing teacher, who is still a professor at my university. My friends Jen and D'Ann, who are always around to talk or vent or hold my hand. My CPs, who push me to go farther and do more with my writing. My husband who, every day, says this is the day I'm going to sell...The list goes on.

It is still easier to believe the bad stuff -- that the rejections I receive mean I'm horrible, that a crit group that has broken up is my fault or that I didn't get That Job because I haven't got a clue about anything. And yet I still have my moments: I placed first in my category in a contest at Savvy Authors this summer and got some amazing feedback -- the kind that leaves you flying high for weeks. I've had 3 full manuscripts requested this year (that's a record for me) and only 1 rejection...and even that rejection was good, encouraging and left me feeling good about my chosen profession. Along the way, my support group has held my hand, told me I could do better and basically pushed me to go for it. That is the validation that counts with me. The contests are great, but the people who believe in me make it easier to believe the good stuff and stuff the bad back in the closet.

6 comments:

  1. Kristy, I totally agree with you....That bad stuff IS easier to believe. And if it wasn't for the people around me, I'd given up a long time ago--or rather probably never would have started writing to begin with.

    I'm dyslexic...I didn't even learn to read until I was in fourth grade, and yet, I've always had BIG dreams. I wanted to be a teacher even before I was out of kindergarten. When I couldn't find a teaching job and decided to change careers, I went for it with a lot of support from my family. My mom and paternal grandma were great supporters because never let me give up---I really wish they were still around today (they both are deceased). My dad is my biggest cheerleader---and my biggest fan (yes, my dad has read my books--sex scenes and all). My husband doesn't understand my breams, but he supports me. And finally my friends---without their encouragement, I wouldn't be here today.

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  2. Kristi~
    Ah, hugs.
    You're so right. It's easier to believe the bad than the good. I forget that a lot. I need to remember that though. When you said you had three fulls requested, that really perked me up. I have too, and that's a lot!
    You're the best, you know.

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  3. What an AHA moment! Vivian sure knew what she was talking about, didn't she? But you ARE making strides all the time. You, too, D'Ann, even if it doesn't always feel that way.

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  4. Thanks for stopping by Sara, D'Ann and Liz! This has been a good year, overall, so I'm not complaining at all. :) At the same time, I know I'm only where I am because of the people in my life who've supported me (and validated me!) and my dreams all this time.

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  5. I like to live in the state of denial and just survive on the positive. Go with the glory, that's my motto :)

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  6. I feel like it takes 3 positive comments to erase one bad one - they just hang on like a bad smell in the kitchen.

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