But as I get older, I find that as the holiday flurry ramps up, as the year winds down - and the end of NaNo looms large! - we sometimes lose sight of all the creativity and imagination and passion that suffused our year. Instead, we focus on all that we didn't do, all that we didn't accomplish. We feel like failures, losers.
The cheerleading part is coming, I promise!
At the holiday party, no one asks about our recently published work. During Thanksgiving dinner, Uncle Duke thinks the weather is far more interesting than our dreams. Over Christmas eggnog, Aunt Lola declares that writing is so easy - take a class, get an agent, a book deal, make some money. She doesn't care to know what we're talking about - rejection letters? Critique groups? Improving our craft? Pfft.
Yes, okay, okay. Here - finally! - are the words of wisdom I want to share -
Modesty that borders on self-deprecation. . . .
You guys, this has got to stop.
We have to stop talking down about ourselves
just because we're afraid that others might beat us to it.
We have to start celebrating our successes and strengths
even though we still have failures and flaws.
We have to be unabashedly awesome in all the ways that we are.
We don't owe anyone a disclaimer for believing in ourselves. . . .
Because you are amazing, and you can do this."
Let's not let anyone else tell us different.
Let's not let anyone else make us think otherwise.
(Pfft. Who needs pom-poms?)