Is the Fighter Still in There Somewhere?

I was sitting here wondering what to write about tonight?  Honestly right now all I feel is a sense of loss.  No, no one in my family or close to me died but in some ways I am wondering if the best part of me did.  I was just asking my best friend Ms. L. last night whether or not she remembered the times when she would call me and I would rush her off the phone telling her that ‘I have to call you back because I’m writing and I have to get this out’.  She said that she remembered that very well.  I asked her where did that person go and she simply responded, ‘she’ll be back’.  

For as long as I could remember I have wanted to be a writer and have books upon books out on shelves and change the world with my words.  But that wasn’t all that I had hoped for.  I wanted to be immersed in creativity from singing and acting and even dancing.  More importantly I wanted to be a symbol for why the arts and creativity is so necessary in this world.  

I don’t know whether I just got so bogged down by the many people that were in my life telling me that I couldn’t do what I always felt I was meant to do.  I don’t know if I just got tired of being rejected and not having the resources I needed to make my dreams a reality.  I don’t know if there’s just some part of me that just got tired of fighting for those dreams.  

As I sit here, still mentally thinking up ideas for my next story, I am still unable to finish the novel that I have been working on since the end of last year.  While I know there are tons of query letters that I need to send out to agents for the second novel I have already done (which is with my editor), I can’t seem to craft the perfect one to send out.  Although I have dozens of ideas for articles to write and even articles that I’ve already written that I need to write query letters for, I still find myself scared that the query letters won’t be perfect enough to get accepted.  

So what happened to the fighter that I had in me ready to do whatever it took?  What happened to the person who was prepared to stay up however long it took to get the work done?  What happened to that person who, when she didn’t have what she needed, made up the resources where there weren’t any, just to fulfill her purpose?  I know that she’s still in there somewhere.  I just don’t know where the fight in me went.  

What I do know is that the passion is still there.  The desire is still there.  I still wake up with stories in my head and new ideas for the stories I have yet to finish.  I still mentally am working on my vision for my media and publishing company.  I am still dreaming up ideas for the creativity camp that I want to create for kids so that they understand just how important the arts are to have in their lives.  I know that my dreams haven’t changed and they haven’t faded away.  I just need to dig that fighter in me back out. 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

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Published in: on June 13, 2012 at 11:07 PM  Comments (1)  
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So You Think You’re Special

There was a recent uproar when a high school English teacher, David McCullough Jr., gave a graduation commencement speech at Wellesley High School in Massachusetts telling the graduating seniors that they were not special.  There have been many negative comments stating that a commencement speech is supposed to be uplifting and motivating for those high school seniors, sending them off into the world full of hope and optimism.  I can see where they are coming from because when I was in high school I might have felt a little let down by being told that I wasn’t special.  But the fact is that it’s the truth. 

Mr. McCullough is only doing what a lot of us parents won’t dare to do for their child as they go off into the world ready to pursue their dreams.  Prepare them for the cold hard truth that there are thousands of other people out there just like them.  There are thousands of people that have just graduated high school, some with honors.  There are thousands of people that have been accepted into top notch universities and are majoring in the very same thing that they are.  There are thousands of people that want to change the world just like they do.  There are thousands of people who are just as smart and as talented as they are.  In other words, they are not special. 

Now obviously Mr. McCullough didn’t really mean to discourage these kids into thinking that all that they had accomplished thus far meant absolutely nothing and that all the hard work they had put in until that point was all for nothing.  He simply didn’t want to send them out into this big old world thinking that there weren’t thousands of other people just like them, who had accomplished the same things and worked just as hard. 

Of course our children are special to us, and everything they do is special and remarkable, but if we don’t prepare them for the fact that when they go out into this world, what we see as being remarkable, the rest of world will see as simply average, then we are doing them a disservice.  We are not giving them the proper tools to really make something of themselves.  They need to know that the world can be their oyster but it will not just open itself up to them without them putting in the work to pry it open. 

We keep sending them out into the world with this sense of entitlement, thinking that they are so special that they don’t have anyone else out there to compete with.  We are allowing them to dilute themselves into thinking that they are the only one’s who can do whatever it is that they do.  But they are not.  We have to let them know that they will have to fight for their rightful place in a world full of people who are exactly like them.  As David McCullough stated in his speech, “if everyone is special, then no one is.”

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Oh the Obstacles We Duck and Dodge While Investing In Our Future

“If you make the investment up front, the return will come back later.”

~Bishop T.D. Jakes 

As writers we go through many obstacles, if we’re lucky, before ever really hitting our stride in our career (and I say our, because I am speaking my future successes into existence even though it is not quite a reality yet).  We go through tons of rejection, writer’s block, having doubters and negativity with anyone who doesn’t see the vision, and often times we are our own and biggest obstacle that stands in the way.  

I was just talking to Ms. L. earlier and saying that I really wish that my journey to this success that I know I am destined for could be going a lot smoother and with a few less obstacles to stumble over.  But then I quickly took that back because I remembered something I heard while listening to Bishop T.D. Jakes talk about living your life on purpose.  He talked about making investments in your future, in your purpose, and how sometimes our mistakes and our struggles are our investments.  

They are what make our successes all the more worthwhile.  He said that sometimes “what you think is working against you is actually working for you” and that “it is the digression that causes the progression”.  I suppose that is what is meant when people say what doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger (although it never feels like that when you’re going through whatever it is you’re going through).  Our struggles are in many ways our fuel and motivation to keep going and to keep dodging those obstacles as they come.  

Bishop T.D. Jakes also said that when it comes to making investments into your future “you can never reap of a dividend where you don’t make an investment—you sow first and reap later; you can’t sow and reap at the same time.”  I suppose that I have to be a little more patient as I make my investments and have a little bit more faith that everything will work out the way that it should.  

I can’t honestly say that all of the obstacles along my journey have not had their purpose.  It may not have felt like it at that particular point in time, but looking back on them now, they all, in so many ways, served their purpose.  I think that all of the struggles that we go through are simply just preparation for when our success comes to fruition.  Then we’ll be able to say to anyone who has something to throw at us to bring it on because there won’t be anything that they have to hit us with that we can’t handle.  

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

If You Don’t Dream Big You Might As Well Not Dream At All

“If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.” 

~Lawrence J. Peter 

I was reading a blog post by one of the bloggers I subscribe to today (Chersti Nieveen) about daring to dream.  She spoke about a conversation she had with one of her critique friends about allowing yourself to believe whatever you want for five minutes, and then accept the reality of the situation.  Basically allow yourself to dream big, as big as you wish, for five minutes, and then focus on what your reality is.  

At first I was a little confused because it seemed like if you thought about everything you wanted for yourself and then you jolted yourself back to a reality that makes those dreams seem impossible then it would feel like a big let down.  However, after thinking about her post for a while I think I realized what it was that she was trying to advise to her readers.  

If you allow yourself to imagine all that you dream to have for your life, all the things that people will tell you are just not possible, and then tune back into the reality of where things stand, it can give you some focus on what needs to be done to make those visions you had for those five minutes become a reality.  

When I took five minutes to think about what I dream of (to be honest I probably would need a little more than five minutes) it included many things but the main things are to sustain a living solely from my writing, to publish more novels, to have my articles start to appear in national magazines and newspapers, and to start my online magazine (Write 2 Be Magazine).  Allowing myself to dream of the those things as if they were already in existence gave me a clearer focus on how to better go about attaining those things.  

Sometimes I forget that it is okay to let myself think about the big bold dreams that I have for myself.  The one’s that for so long seem so impossible to ever reach.  It’s not crazy to think that you could actually make those dreams come true.  It’s not that far fetched is it?  After all, how can you ever really go after what it is you want without really admitting to yourself all of what it is that you want.  Knowing where you want to end up only enables you to focus on the path you need to take to get there.   

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Smiling Through the Not Knowing of It All

“Nobody trips over mountains.  It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble.  Pass all the pebbles in your path and you will find you have crossed the mountain.” 

~Author Unknown 

You ever have those days where you sit and think about all of the things that are just not going the way that you expected them to.  Where you are not where you thought you would be and you’re tired of trying so damn hard because it all seems like it just might be for nothing.  

Today wasn’t a bad day for me necessarily but I had a conversation with someone who was talking about how much they doubted themselves at what they’re purpose was at one point in time and how they finally decided to move out of their own way and get hustling even if no one else believed in them.  

It’s the way I used to be and the way I would love to be again but I just had that slight feeling of ‘what’s the point’ after having that conversation.  I believe in me but to this very minute I still feel like I’m the only one that seems to believe that I am good enough at what I do to ever make a decent living at it.  Ordinarily there is nothing wrong with being the only one who believes that you’re good at what you do, for a while that is.  

The only thing is that with being a writer, there has to be someone else that believes you’re good enough eventually if you ever want to make a living at it.  I don’t just mean the one person here and the one person there that comes around so sporadically that you can’t really call that a decent living, I mean the steady stream of people that are willing to take a chance on the belief that you have in yourself.  

Well when I have one of those days, where I just want to throw in the towel on it all and simply give up I try to listen to music that motivates me and gets me back in the right frame of mind again.  One of the best songs for me to listen to when I feel like giving up is Kirk Franklin’s ‘Smile’ because the lyrics of the course are just what I need to hear.  

I Smile. Even though I hurt see I smile

I know God is working so I smile

Even though I’ve been here for a while, I smile.

Smile.  It’s so hard to look up when you’ve been down.

Sure would hate to see you give up now.

You look so much better when you smile, so smile. 

How can you not smile after hearing such lyrics?  How can you want to give up after hearing those lyrics?  How could you not feel motivated to do what God put in motion for you to be doing?  After hearing that song everything seems to be put back in focus again.  My purpose seems to be back front and center, where it should have always been.  

The fact is that I would not just be letting myself down if I was to toss my dreams aside, but more importantly I would be letting God down as well.  I just have to remember that just because I am down right now, just because I am not where I want to be right now, doesn’t mean that God isn’t still working on me and my life.  I guess I keep forgetting that I am not the only one who believes in me and my gifts, because God believed in me first.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Who’s Still Afraid of Rejection? Oh Yeah, That Would Be Me

“Believe in yourself and in your own voice, because there will be times in this business when you will be the only one who does. Take heart from the knowledge that an author with a strong voice will often have trouble at the start of his or her career because strong, distinctive voices sometimes make editors nervous. But in the end, only the strong survive.”

~Jayne Ann Krentz 

Yes, I said it.  As much as I try to convince others not to be afraid to go after what they want for their dreams and to not always be afraid that someone is going to say no, I have not yet been able to take my own advice.  But isn’t that how it always goes?  You tell someone to go for it, don’t be afraid, go big or go home, and all of those other motivating and encouraging things you say to your friends, that you whole heartedly mean when you’re saying them, yet somehow you still can’t apply that rule of thumb to you and your life’s dreams.  

I can’t seem to move out of my own damn way.  I keep putting it on my to do lists that I have to get these query letters to these national magazines that I’ve been dying to see my writing in, or the query letters to this list of agents that I want to possibly represent me, and yet when I go to type up the letters, or even just a simple letter of introduction, I get so caught up in trying to make them perfect.  I’ll get the letters done but then when I go over them it just doesn’t scream perfection and I get worried about a rejection that hasn’t happened, and one that can’t if I don’t ever send the damn letters anywhere.  

I can’t figure out why I always do this to myself.  I know I’m not perfect and while you hear people always talking about pitching the perfect pitch and not sending imperfect query letters out, I know that all of them couldn’t have gotten it right all the time.  Their letters couldn’t have always got them a guaranteed acceptance from the publication or agent of their choice.  So why is it that I can’t get the notion of perfection out of my head?  

It’s seriously holding me back and the truth of the matter is that the most imperfect query letter is the one that never gets seen by anyone.  Next week I am going to make it my mission to get up the courage with being okay that I’m not perfect and that my letters most likely won’t be perfect, but at least they will be sent out, and at least, if they do get rejected by everyone I send them to, they were still seen. 

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://write-2-be.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

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