Monday, March 19, 2012

Inspiration for Speedbo and Beyond

 Inspiration for Speedbo and Beyond
by Missy Tippens

Missy, here. How’s everyone doing with Speedbo? Are any of you finding it difficult to hang in there due to lack of support?

I have to admit, I’ve always had support in my writing. I wrote for over 10 years before selling my first novel, attending weekly critique group, monthly writers’ meetings, and yearly conferences—all at expense of money and time. Not to mention the cost of computers, paper, ink, contest fees and postage!

All the while, my husband was encouraging me and watching the kids so I could pursue my writing. My kids were cheering me on. My parents and sister were sharing in any successes and commiserating over rejections. I guess I took the support for granted.

I think the first time this really hit me was when I started getting letters and emails from readers after the release of my first book. I heard from women who’d seen my dedication/acknowledgement to my family, women who said their husbands had never supported their dreams. Or who said their family had always told them they’d never amount to anything. Women whose relationships with their children were strained or shattered. Heartbreaking letters where women shared their hurts, shared their questions about how they can pursue their dreams if they don’t have someone like I do.

Last week as I thought about my blog post, I realized that some of you out there might be having the same doubts, discouragement and hurt. I know I may be simply an online friend to you, but I hope I can offer some support. One way I’d like to do that is to share a touching story with you. Something that inspired me when I read it.

I’m a classical music lover. To me, there’s nothing more moving than the ending of Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony (Symphony No. 2 in C Minor). The whole work is spectacular, but the ending makes me literally weep. I remember playing it as I drove home from the beach one time, hitting the ending, and having to pull over because I couldn’t see to keep driving! I recently attended a performance of the work by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) and Chorus—and took plenty of tissues with me! What I read in the notes in the concert program astounded…and inspired me.

Gustav Mahler is brilliant and has touched many people through his music. But he experienced a form of rejection like we writers often experience. Like some of you who have negative outside voices experience. I’d like to share a bit from the ASO program notes (click here to go to the ASO website and then click on “notes” to download and read the full Notes on the Program by Ken Meltzer). Meltzer says:

In March of 1891, Mahler was appointed conductor of the Stadttheater in Hamburg.  That September, Mahler approached the eminent conductor and leader of the Hamburg Orchestra, Hans von Bülow.  Mahler asked Bülow to hear Totenfeier [what he called the first movement], which had still not been performed.
The meeting was a disaster.  Bülow had the utmost respect for Mahler as a conductor, but did not care for the young man’s compositions.  Mahler played a piano reduction of the score for Bülow.  Although Bülow repeatedly covered his ears, he still urged the increasingly agitated composer to continue.  Finally, as Mahler related to his friend, composer Josef Foerster:
When I had finished I awaited the verdict silently.  But my only listener remained at the table silent and motionless.  Suddenly, he made an energetic gesture of rejection and said: “If that is still music then I do not understand a single thing about music.”
We parted from each other in complete friendship, I, however, with the conviction that Bülow considers me an able conductor but absolutely hopeless as a composer.

Missy, again. A month later, Mahler called that first movement a “symphonic poem” and was apparently going to leave it at that, forgetting the idea of a multi-movement symphony. Can you imagine if Mahler had listened to the negative feedback from Bülow, someone whose opinion he respected, and had quit? Eventually, though, he found inspiration and finished the second and third movements. But again, he hit a wall with the ending. Then…get this…

When Mahler attended Bülow’s funeral, he was struck with inspiration about how to end the work. :) How’s that for irony?!

Mahler announced his 2nd Symphony completed on June 29, 1894. What if he had never finished the piece, had never written that ending that has touched me so deeply that I can’t hear it without bawling like a baby?

I nearly sobbed as I read this story in the program notes. What if you or I were to give up before writing something that could touch hearts?

DO NOT let negative outside (or inside!) voices keep you from using the gifts with which God has blessed you! Hang in there. Push through doubts and roadblocks. You CAN finish your book. I have faith in you.

If you’d like to hear the ending of Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony, I found one version on You Tube. Click here for the last 4 minutes. Prepare for chill bumps and grab a Kleenex! :)

For more info on the ASO and the AMAZING Chorus, click here.

Today is another day of our March Speedbo. Find out more about Speedbo and our exciting weekly prizes here. Comment today for a chance to win! Winners announced in the Weekend Edition.


  1. Missy,
    Thank you for the link to Mahler's symphony and the story behind his composition. You made a great point! I'm going to keep writing and revising and submitting.

  2. Majestic and inspiring!!

    I am blessed like you in having unwavering support from my family and friends. It's the inside negative feedback I have to ward against.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hi Missy:

    A great ending gets its power from all that went before it. By itself you have the sound and fury but not the significance. You have the emotion but not the substance.

    I think it is the same for a romance: a great ending is great because of the journey the characters took to make it happen.

    What if each romance had an ending like Mahler’s second? Emotional and forever memorable. Make the journey worthy of a great ending. Make the great ending inevitable. This in not about increasing tensions. It’s about increasing meaning.

    It’s music but somehow I feel that Mahler’s second is about man’s search for meaning.

    To the degree we give our work meaning, to that same degree we require less support from those around us. Meaning does not stand in need of validation.

    Late night thoughts on Mahler’s Second.

    Thanks for sharing.

    I think there are many Mahler fans in Seekerville.

    Mahler and Missy:
    M & Ms for the soul.


  4. The Resurrection Symphony is amazing, as is Bernstein's passion for it! Thanks for the link.

    I'm blessed to have a very supportive family, including a daughter who also writes. The only lack of support I have to cope with is from my IC. LOL!

    Had a good spurt on my Speedbo endeavour today and am hoping to continue building on it tomorrow. I figure I'll need extra sustenance so am making a big batch of chocolate brownies. I'll leave a plate here on the buffet table to share with anyone else with a chocolate craving. :)

  5. My parents (I am so glad to still have them they are 84 and 88) are supportive and encouraging in most things but I feel bad when my Mother says 'Oh anyone could write one of those books."
    My husband is a good and holy man (really!) but when I asked him "Am I supposed, to be a writer?" he said, "Well maybe you should try writing." I have been writing off and on for years. Maybe it's the off and on that makes him say that.I just wanted him to say yes. I think God would not have put those stories in my head if I wasn't supposed to write them down and I thought I was blessed somehow to have them. So those are my discouraging words for the day. I'll try not to write another downer for a really long time.

  6. Thanks, Missy,

    It is important to remember the finish is as important, if not more sometimes, than the Journey.

    My husband and family have been supportive. I wished they were more tech savvy to help on the promotional end, but they do encourage.
    My husband sometimes has more faith in me than I do myself.
    He wants me to use the gift God gave me, and fulfill my writing dream, so I'll be the whole woman God created.

    Which, after going around this track over and over, should help me finish well.

    Thanks again
    Tina P.

  7. Thank you Missy for sharing this. What an amazing story about Mahler.

    My mother is supportive. I didn't realise how much so until she said something to me one day. I have ongoing trials in my life, and when they rear their ugly head again, for some reason my reaction is always: "Well, this means I can't write a book." It's ludicrous, but it affects me that way. Well I was trying to talk myself out of another one of those boughts, and my mum suddenly said to me, "Don't you dare stop writing."

    Otherwise, I struggle with the voice that keeps telling me that as a broke, single mum I don't have the right to pursue my writing dream. Afterall, God did bless me with other talents too. How do you know which talent you're supposed to be using? Although at the moment I feel led to pursue the writing whilst I am at home with the kids. I don't know how long I will have that luxury though :)

  8. Missy, what a wonderful story! Thank you so much for sharing it. How blessed are we that he kept on...

    People take careless shots at us.

    We either accept the shot or reject it.

    Please. Reject the negative voices around you. Build a mental image of a screen.... Or a hand, held out, palm facing the negative person, a mental image of NO. NO. NO.

    Whatever it takes. And remember:

    The best revenge is success.

    Keep it simple, Peeps.

  9. Oh, Vince, I just read M&M's for the soul.

    Love it!

  10. Mary (don't anyone yell at me....)

    A lot of guys don't get it. Really. Truly.

    We do.

    Keep writing. Write. Write. Write.

    I don't think there are shortcuts or easy-peasy ways to get around that. Kind of like watching an athlete perform... The success!

    But that's after years of dropped catches, falls off the balance beam, missed field goals and broken limbs.

    Our falls are mostly internal.

    Don't fall.

    Yoda: There is no try. There is only do or do not.

    (Tina Pinson will have a field day with that, but that's right up there with my Churchill and Franklin fave quotes!)

  11. Hi Missy, this advice is good for other things than just writing. I know what its like not to have a supportive parent. Even a before she went into the nursing home she made a comment that I would not be able to look after myself and pay bills without her. Even some things I was interested in doing she may not say it but I knew she didn't think I would make a go of it. So I can see how being negative can have an impact.

    Helen W dont give up your mother is right. Even if at some stage you need outside work you can still write. I know you have a great Aussie novel in you.

  12. Missy,

    Thank you so much for the inspiration first thing Monday morning.

    I've been very blessed with supportive family and friends. With each rejection I've received it's been my dad who says, "Well I just know it will happen, you'll find the right (insert agent or editor) and then it will all happen for you." And though my friends admit they don't understand the voices I hear or my need to write they're excited for me and want me to succeed because it's something that makes me happy.

    But the greatest support is the encouragement I get from my heavenly Father, who when I compare my writing to another or question my genre or feel like what I'm writing is a 90,000 word waste of time, never fails to remind me Who gave me the gift, joy and desire. And Who will be always be on the sidelines cheering me to the finish line.

  13. Good morning, Laura! I'm glad you're going to keep at it!

    Helen, I think the internal voices can be the toughest part for a lot of us!

  14. Vince, some great points! One of my favorite workshops ever was Deb Dixon's on Climbing the Slippery Black Slope, where she talks about building during the whole story (from the opening scene) toward that big black moment. (Although I know how you feel about black moments!) :)

    Interesting that you picked up on Mahler's searching for meaning. I read a review of the performance I attended. He talks some about this, about Mahler's obsession with death. Here's a link:

    LOL on the M&M's! :)

  15. Carol G., thank you for the brownies!! I forgot to offer food this morning. I'll offer a nice hot pot of coffee to go with it!

  16. Mary, I agree with Ruthy. Just focus on the positive comments and deflect any others. Or use them! Let them light a fire under you. Sometimes a little "I'll show you!" attitude can make us accomplish a lot. I know, because I've done that in my own life. :)

  17. M & M, Music and Missy for the Soul. I love it. Thanks Vince and thank you Missy for the lovely start of a Monday morning. The music was inspiring as well as Mahler's story.

    Thanks for the brownies Carol. They go great with Helen's coffee.

    Better get back to speedbo. Happy writing everyone.

  18. Tina P., I know how it is to wish the family was more tech savvy! I envy those whose spouses can design websites (Tina R.) or do graphic design (Julie). :)

  19. Helen W, we can always find something in our life that needs our attention. And it's tough to make our writing a priority when we're still trying to make that first sale, when we feel like it's a luxury to write. I used to do that with my writing, especially when my kids were young. I once gave up writing, certain that I was taking away too much of the family income and depriving my kids. Then I got a call that very day that I was a finalist in the Maggie--and decided God was still calling me to write and had used the phone call to spur me on.

    Also, we can use more than one gift/talent. If God has blessed you with multiple talents, then use them all! He'll guide you and show you where He wants you to be serving. :)

  20. Ooh, I love that Ruthy is talking about revenge before breakfast! :) Well, it's probably lunch time for Ruthy as she's already been up for 4 hours. :)

  21. Jenny, you're right! It can apply to anything in our lives that we want to achieve! Keep at it.

    You know, I just had a thought. Something I realized over the years... Sometimes parents sound like they doubt us when they're really just being protective. They're worried we'll fail and are trying to keep us from experiencing the pain of failure.

  22. Kirsten, YES! Thanks for that reminder!

  23. Good morning, Sandra! Glad to see you here. It's pretty early there in Arizona, isn't it? :)

  24. Missy, tears pooled in my eyes as I read your beautiful post today! Thank you for the encouragement to pursue writing our stories even when we get (sometimes VERY) negative feedback. Keeping the greater picture in mind is so important.

    I, like you, have the support of my husband and children. What an amazing blessing! My heart aches for women who have dreams beating in their hearts that may never become reality because of the words of loved ones around them.

    Thank you for sharing Mahler's story. Truly moving! I will remember it when I hit those times of wondering whether I can really write this story or not. Such inspiration here today! Thank you!

  25. Thanks, Missy, for the reminder not to take my husband for granted. I also don't take for granted the gift of writing that has been passed down through three generations now from my father to me to my adult children.

    I was fortunate to be able to read Jessica Nelson's Love on the Range yesterday. But I found myself with a case of "I will never be able to write like that"s.

    My biggest hang up is not fearing what is going to happen when I hand my work over to critique partners I really do respect but stopping myself before I even get that far.

    Thanks for the Monday inspiration!

    Peace and support to all us Speedbots, Julie

  26. I have just (in less than two minutes time!!!! Or so!) ordered Jessica's book, Eva Maria's book, Janet's new novella in the Brides of the West anthology, Glynna's book, and Engaging the Earl, a delightful debut historical by Mandy Goff.... And all on sale and NO SHIPPING at!!!

    HOW STINKIN' EXCITED AM I???? And... I spent no money on gas and therefore did my part to remove myself from OPEC oil.

    The end of delighted lecture!!!

  27. Jeanne, I'm glad you were inspired like I was! :)

  28. Julie, that's so cool about the 3 generations of writers! I didn't know that about you. Thanks for sharing!

  29. Ruthy, thank you for that info!!! I will head over to order as well!

  30. Wow, the symphony.

    Seekerville might be getting to classy for me.


  31. As for supportive husbands, my husband's support when I spent ten years writing with no success (well, I saw bits of it in contests and NICE rejection letters, but those kinds of 'successs' are hard to explain)
    Anyway, my husband's support went like this......just in case you ever make any money at this, I don't want you really mad at me.

    Usually followed by, "WHERE'S SUPPER!?"

    Or more often, "YOU BURNED THE POTATOES AGAIN????????"
    Which is somewhat short of GLOWING.

  32. Please stay tuned while Missy explains to us how opera helped her defeat shingles

    How Monet and Rembrandt helped her better create her famous chicken fried steak

    followed by
    How ballet gave her the energy she needed to mow the lawn.

  33. MARY C:
    Seekerville will never be too classy for you! It's the variety of personalities that makes this place as special as it is. :)

    I love this - "Mahler and Missy:
    M & Ms for the soul." ;-)

    What a wonderful encourager you are! Isn't it wonderful when God gives us those revelations that grow and expand our minds and emotions and empathy for others?

    For me, I have a strange support system. My mom is my biggest fan! My dad has no doubt I'll one day be published. I think he has way more confidence in me than I do myself. And he rarely ever says a word. LOL But the few he does say shows the confidence he has in me. My hubby? He's a strange one. Nearly 20 yrs of marriage and I still don't understand the way his mind works. He supports me, but in a less than obvious sort of way.

    My boys don't THINK I'm a writer, they KNOW I'm a writer and they get excited with me anytime I have something to get excited about. Then, there are the wonderful brothers who are like, "What are you waiting for? So get published already." :D

    I've been very blessed with friends who continue to stick by me even though I'm going on years of writing with still no publication. What would I do if they gave up on me?

  34. LOLOLOL!!! Mary, you TOTALLY crack me up!! And you know, you inspire me. You've inspired me so much that now I'm going to be researching, trying to find the cure for shingles though cultural arts!



  35. By the way, Mary. I love this quote from your hubby:

    "just in case you ever make any money at this, I don't want you really mad at me."

    :) Gotta love a man who covers his bases. :)

  36. Linnette, I think maybe we just need to give up on figuring out how their minds work! :) We can just keep writing our romance novels, pretending we do, though.


    I'm glad you have such a great support system.

  37. BTW, Mary. Even though I gave up dance lessons when I was a kid, I still took a ballet class when I was in college. AND I took more lessons (ballet and jazz) after I was married!

    You, too, can do this! And we'll all come watch and cheer you on. :)

  38. I've never listened to classical music, but I want to give it a try after today.

    I have a supportive family, who would be thrilled for me to get published.

    Missy, I'm familiar with that "I'll show you" attitude. The elementary principal of my kids was one of those few who looked down on parents like they were stupid. She told me I'd never be able to help my 3rd grader w/his writing, just to leave him alone. Of course, I only wanted to help because they were putting him in the principal's office to write because he was having such a hard time. Hello? It looked like to me THEY would welcome a little help from mom.

    Loved your post. We all need support.

  39. Oh, Connie, I hope you showed that principal! :)

  40. Popping in real quick.

    I have amazing support from my hubby and kids and BFF and somewhat from others. Certain portions of my family, though, I don't even discuss it with. Not at this point.

    Will be back later ;). Got a doc appointment and an appointment with my netbook while I wait :D.

  41. Missy, thank you for your inspiring post, for sharing Mahler's beautiful music and the bumps along the road on his journey!

    I've been blessed with support, from my parents, husband and kids, grandkids. The first words out of my mother's mouth when I told my parents I was writing and wanted to be published were, "I hope we live to see it." They didn't live to see me published, but my mother's certainty publication would come eventually was a precious gift I will always treasure.

    For those who don't have that, may God give you a special dose of encouragement.


  42. Happy writing, Carol! I hope you don't have to wait long. Or maybe I should hope you do! :)

  43. Janet, that's so sweet about your parents. I suspect they got to see it from heaven, though.

    Amen on that special dose of encouragement for those who don't have support.

  44. Thanks for the inspiring story, Missy!

    But, sorry that music doesn't do a thing for me. LOL.

    I have lukewarm support, I guess. All my husband worries about is money - so maybe some day when I have a check, he'll be more supportive! One can hope. But at least he doesn't complain about the time I spend at the computer, so that's a plus.

    My mother doesn't understand, though she tries to appear interested when I mention something about writing. My daughter is very supportive, as are my mother in law and my friends.

    My critique partners are GREAT! Don't know what I'd do without them.

    And of course it's why I LOVE Seekerville so much. I get all the support and encouragement I need right here every day! THANKS SEEKERS!


  45. There's a nightmare scenario, Missy. a tutu

  46. Why oh why is the song "Pink Elephants On Parade" running through my head?

    If it gets stuck there, I'm blaming Missy.

  47. Missy,

    Thanks much for the encouragement and inspiration. Seekerville is THE PLACE to come for it.

    Great reminder!

  48. Missy,

    I have wonderful support from my parents, siblings, and friends. The only discouraging person is my husband, and it seems his opinions have a greater impact than all the others combined.

    Thanks so much for this post. I can use all the encouragement I can get.

  49. Missy, I think God gave him to me to keep me humble. I've always considered myself a pretty good reader of people, but my own hubby stumps me. LOL I agree with you. We'll just pretend we understand them. :D

    834 on WC this morning....

  50. Oh Missy, what a great post!

    Music just speaks to the soul, doesn't it? I love Mahler...

    I get mixed reactions from people when I tell them about my writing.

    I'm not sure my MIL understands the whole process, but she has always loved to read. She had to leave school after 8th grade to help out at home (her mother had just given birth to twins - children #12 and 13), and has always tried to continue her education the best way she could. I named the MC in my first book after her - and when I told her it brought tears to her eyes.

    My dear husband, though, is the one who unfailingly believes in me, no matter what. (Sort of like Horton, right?) Five years ago when I was still knee-deep in homeschooling, he bought me a lap-top computer. My own. He knew what I needed to fulfill my dreams before I did.

    And, of course, there are the Seekers! How much more encouraging can one group of people be?

    We all need people in our lives who can drown out our own negative voices, don't we?

  51. Sue, paychecks certainly do help! :)

  52. Thanks so much Missy for the encouragement - I got in a whopping 1022 words this weekend - but I'm not discouraged (well not too discouraged) because I knew I wouldn't get as much done while travelling/visiting that I did when totally alone and focused.

    I'll be faced with that the last weekend of March too - but plan (hope?) to get some writing done before that weekend to compensate.

    Good luck & God's Blessings EVERYONE!

  53. LOL, Mary! Sorry to put a song in your head. Of course, I'm loving that image of you in a tutu. ;)

  54. And Debby Giusti...

    I read Nowhere to Hide yesterday.
    Loved it.
    Favorite line: "Matt pulled of his shirt and all thoughts of computers vanished."

  55. KC and Andrea, I'm glad we can offer encouragement around here. I remember, years ago, being encouraged by Liz Curtis Higgs, and then I read where she calls herself an Encourager. And I thought, I want to do that, too! So I hope this helped.

  56. Thanks for the music, Missy! I have a really supportive family and I'm very grateful for their encouragement. My daughter is tech savvy with a PC, but less so with a Mac. Still, she's much better than I am and I'm extremely grateful!!!

    Technology makes my eyes glaze over even though I try to learn how to do things. I write about the 19th, early 20th century and technologically-wise, I'm stuck there.

  57. Jan, what a sweet story about your MIL. And about your husband buying you a laptop!

    And yes, we need cheerleaders to help us overcome the negative voices (internal and external).

  58. Very inspiring, Missy. Truly, truly, truly. Beautiful.

  59. Cara, yes! You have your daughter to help, too. I forgot about her. I have to admit I can usually contact my oldest if I have trouble on my Mac. He's had one for several years. I wish he'd taken some sort of graphic design class in college, though. :)

  60. Thanks, Myra.

    Now, I'm off to work on the manuscript. Will check in later!

    In the meantime, I'm laying out an early lunch for you east coasters. Turkey wrap sandwiches with spinach and carrots. The recipe is at the Cafe! Or check out today's recipe--Pad Thai.

  61. Mary in a tutu.

    Thats quite the visual before breakfast. I suppose Mary has on her pink cowboy boots. Dancing through the cow patties, singing a smurfy tune.
    Lalalalalala lalalalala

  62. Missy, what an encouragement this morning. I used to cry and moan because of the lack of spousal support.

    But now, I'm thankful. Even though my husband is literate, he's not a reader. This is a good thing. He's a very good man and a godly husband, but he tends to be controlling. If he felt the burden that I do for my stories, he would try to take over in his own helpful way and thus make writing miserable for me.

    So I thank God for the gift He's given me. Writing is something that mine. All mine. My children joke that I'm like Smeagol in Lord of the Rings. "It's my precious."

  63. Missy, you've touched on one of the hardest parts of writing.

    I know in the past I've gotten feedback from a published writer that was wrong. But typically what our writer friends tell us about our work is correct.

    So how do we differentiate between when they're right and when they're wrong?

  64. Glorious music, Missy. Thanks for the inspiration on a dreary, thunderstorm filled day.

    I knew that my dh really believed in me when I asked if I should get a 'real job' and even though he'd just lost his job, he responded without missing a beat, "You ARE working. You're writing." That's why I still pick up his socks off the bedroom floor... ;) (He found another job rather quickly, BTW, and relocated us back to home Chicago. Blessed indeed!)

  65. Hi Missy:

    Kids like Mary are why I could never let anyone in school know that I liked classical music. Even in the military I could never tell the guys, “I can’t get drunk with you tonight. I’ve got tickets to the Opera.” (La Scala no less)!

    Mary in a tutu (she brought it up) is one thing but having to listen to Mary sing Sieglinde in Die Walküre for the whole opera that would be life threatening. So there! Revenge of the nerds!

    Clarification: My view on black moments is that they are not needed in order for a story to qualify as a romance. It’s OK to have black moments: I just prefer they not be predictable, that they occur as a surprise, and that once they arrive I want to kick myself for not having seen them coming. That’s all.

    About Pantsers: I judge novels by the end product. I also respect pantsers in much the same way I respect people who cross the Grand Canyon on a tightrope without a safety net. It’s great if you can do it but it’s not my cup of tea.

    About “Meaning”. I think the power of the search for meaning is what gives the “Moral Premise” its importance. Often this is power without the perception of power. It’s like being moved by the ‘unmoved mover’ – transcendental. I think a great work like Mahler’s Second has a Moral Premise. I know you are a student of the Moral Premise. Do you have any feelings as to what this musical Moral Premise would be?

    BTW: No cancer. I was very worried over the weekend. Out of all the Speedbo entrants I found out I was number 13!. Not my lucky number. I was also awaiting test results to verify earlier results that indicated cancer. My hope was that an infection caused the abnormal first results. It was the only time I ever prayed to have had an infection. This morning first thing: infection gone – tests normal. Churchill once said that the greatest exhilaration is to be shot at and missed. Somehow I feel that way this morning. Happy dance!

    Listening to Mahler last night was particularly emotional. I hope what I wrote made some sense. : )

    RUTH: “Living well is the best revenge.” You can have lots of success and be miserable. I’ll trade success for health anytime. : )


    P.S. Support is a double edged sword. The more support we get, the more pressure we feel and the greater our disappointment with rejection.

    I get great support from everyone as long as no one has to read what I write. No one has ever said, “Can I read your story”.

    Once I sent my sainted mother (all Irish have sainted mothers) a novel, a play, an a novella I wrote and she never read any of them. “That’s nice, Vinny, I’m sure they're wonderful.”

    “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:32

  66. Yes, Tina P! I'm seeing the boots as well. :)

  67. That is so inspiring, Missy! How close do we come sometimes to missing our destiny? And how modest and humble was Mahler to keep composing after that crushing criticism from someone he respected? I once got a rejection from a critique group. I'd been studying writing for a couple of years and had finished my first book and some friends encouraged me to join their critique group. I applied, sent in a sample of my work, and the head of the critique group sent me a very long email explaining why my writing just wasn't up to their standards. She actually quoted a long passage from a popular book on writing that I had just recently read, to let me know where I was lacking. LOL! I can laugh about it now! But it felt humiliating at the time.

  68. Susan Anne Mason, I know how you feel! My husband is the same way. But he is liking the money I'm making. Even though it's small, it's enough to keep him (mostly) supportive! And I've accepted that he may never be the kind of supportive that I dreamed of. It will drive you crazy if you keep longing for what will never be! And I don't like crazy. In secondary characters, yes. In myself, no.

  69. Oh, Vince, I'm so glad the Cancer missed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  70. Dropping back by real quick - Got a bit over 1K in the waiting room, waiting in the room and waiting for DS to get done with preschool.

  71. Hi,
    I want to thank all of you for the help and encouragement. You have hit some nails on some heads for me. Good aim!
    Missy, it is true, sometimes parents sound like they doubt us when they are just trying to keep us from disappointment. I really should be motivated to "git er done" while my parents can still read what I wrote.

    Thanks everybody for being here, love Seekerville.

    And thanks for the Yoda quote Ruthy. I have repeated that to my kids, I need to tell myself.

  72. Thanks for the inspiration, Missy!! Lovely symphony!! I'd never heard it before. I very much enjoyed watching the conductor's face in the video you linked to. His expression shows how much he cherishes the piece.

    I'm blessed to have support from my mom and dad, and even my grandma. Very blessed indeed. I take it for granted far too many times.

    I'm crawling toward "the end" very slowly this week. Cold meds seem to do that to me. Caught some kind of bug and it's really hobbled my pace. I'm too close to give up now, though. Happy writing, everyone!

  73. Bridgett, sometimes what we think is a difficlty can turn out to be a blessing. :)

  74. Sally, sometimes you just have to pray and follow your gut. I like to think that if several people make the same suggestions, then maybe it's something I need to work on. But ultimately, it's your story, and only you can decide what works for your vision for it.

    I suggest always working with people you trust and who care about you. They'll tell you their opinion, truthfully. They won't sugar coat (hopefully) but also won't be hurtful. They'll have your best interest at heart.

  75. Lyndee, he's a jewel if he'll say that!! :)

  76. LOL, Vince! I love that we nerds can stick together. :)

    And thanks for the clarification on the black moment! I understand better where you're coming from now. :)

    I hate to admit it, but I listen to music more just for pure enjoyment and what I like in sounds (like Mahler's huge ending). I don't really understand where a composer is coming from, though I do enjoy reading the program notes and trying to understand (or act like I do!). ;) It's kind of like looking at art work. I know what I like, even if I don't get what the artist was going for. :)

  77. Vince, I'm so glad your cancer scare is over!! So glad all is well and that you're healing up.

  78. Oh, Melanie! Ouch!! I bet that was humiliating. But like we said earlier, you had your "I'll show you!" moment. I'm so glad you hung in there and wrote your wonderful books!

  79. Yay, Carol!! Way to "git her done" as Mary Cline said! :)

  80. Yay, Natalie!! "The End" are some of the happiest words to type! :)

  81. I'm done with SpeedBo for now. Hoping to get more in tonight. Right now I'm at:

    2378 for the day with a total SpeedBo count of 18,423!!! :D

  82. Inspiring, Missy! Thanks!

    Cheering Vince! YAY! Cancer free!!! Now that's what I call GOOD NEWS!

  83. Beautiful, encouraging post! And oh my, that conductor!!!! Such passion and reverence for that piece. Incredible. It did give me goosebumps!

    I'm surrounded by naysayers -- and worse -- I'm pretty much a closet writer in real life. I have one cheerleader -- my daughter -- but since I birthed her, that's expected, right? LOL. I love the encouragement I get online though! And you definitely did that today!

  84. Thanks for the encouragement, Missy. My family is very supportive of my writing, especially my husband, who is also a writer. My parents have always been very supportive, too. They even bought my ACFW membership as a way to show their support!

    Unfortunately, my husband's parents aren't as supportive. They hate reading, and don't think being a writer is a valid career choice. Whenever he mentions the book he's working on, they either get silent or change the subject. It's tough for him, which is why I'm SO thankful my parents can get behind him, too.

    I'd never heard that Mahler piece before. For some reason, I was thinking it was Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, II, the music which is played at the end of The King's Speech. That's a pretty powerful piece, too!

  85. Nice work, Linnette!

    Debby, so glad you dropped by!

  86. Kav, I'm glad someone else got chill bumps! :)

    I have to tell a funny story about my daughter (she's 15). I showed up at the tennis match the other day, and her eyes got really wide. She said, Wow, that outfit is really cute!" Then before I could even say thank you, she added, "For a change."

    LOL!!! Of course, she laughed and admitted that sounded kind of mean. :) But like only a daughter can do, she turned it into a compliment anyway. :) Daughters can be brutally honest! So, Kav, your daughter's encouragement can't be taken too lightly!

  87. Stephanie, I'm so glad your family is there to support your husband along with you!

    And yes, I love the music from The King's Speech as well! That was such a powerful, touching movie!

  88. Sally, I wanted to add something more to what I said before. There's a difference in someone critiquing our work and "critiquing" us personally or as a writer. It's one thing to tell us we need to make our character more likable or to pick up the pacing of our story. It's another thing to tell us we're a terrible writer and should keep our day job. :)

    We have to toughen up some and learn to listen to opinions on our work, to weight it and decide whether or not to make changes (which can be difficult, like you said!).

    But if someone is just negative and attacking our goals and dreams, that's when we have to protect ourselves. We have to remember why we're writing and stay strong.

  89. By the way, here are the words to the final movement of the piece (English translation)

    Note: The first eight lines were taken from the poem Die Auferstehung by Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock. Mahler omitted the final four lines of this poem and wrote the rest himself.

    Rise again, yes, rise again,
    Will you My dust,
    After a brief rest!
    Immortal life! Immortal life
    Will He who called you, give you.
    To bloom again were you sown!
    The Lord of the harvest goes
    And gathers in, like sheaves,
    Us together, who died.
    O believe, my heart, O believe:
    Nothing to you is lost!
    Yours is, yes yours, is what you desired
    Yours, what you have loved
    What you have fought for!
    O believe,
    You were not born for nothing!
    Have not for nothing, lived, suffered!
    What was created
    Must perish,
    What perished, rise again!
    Cease from trembling!
    Prepare yourself to live!
    O Pain, You piercer of all things,
    From you, I have been wrested!
    O Death, You masterer of all things,
    Now, are you conquered!
    With wings which I have won for myself,
    In love’s fierce striving,
    I shall soar upwards
    To the light which no eye has penetrated!
    Its wing that I won is expanded,
    and I fly up.
    Die shall I in order to live.
    Rise again, yes, rise again,
    Will you, my heart, in an instant!
    That for which you suffered,
    To God will it lead you!

  90. I'm getting ready to Snoopy Dance. I hope! I'm 5 likes away from 300 likes on Linnette's Writing Corner!!!

  91. Connie, thanks for your kind words about NOWHERE TO HIDE.

    Actually I had forgotten the line you mentioned. I wrote that? Really?

    Glad you liked the story! :)

  92. Okay, let's talk discouragement. I just wrote a brilliant post, possibly the best writing of my lifetime, beyond a doubt it would have gone down in history as profound -- and it disappeared. Poof! If anyone finds it ... uh . . . just delete it. I might have exaggerated just a tad about its qualities.

    Support from family, yes. I wonder if some of that stems from my years of journalism and actually making money writing. I am blessed with my local RWA chapter -- simply can't say enough good things about them. You'd think I was exaggerating. I also have two truth-telling friends who offer constructive criticism because they want to help me do my best.

    However, I've encountered setbacks and negativity that caused me to question what I do soooo many times. We're talking heart-crushing, creativity-blocking negative opinions. After the most recent episode, I came *that* close to calling it quits. Then -- yeah, just like in the fairy tales -- the manuscript won two first places. And somewhere along the way I realized the negative people only have as much power as I give them. I'm doing my best to keep them powerless.

    Now if I can just remember that lesson the next time I encounter discouragement -- because I have no doubt there'll be a next time :-)

    Lovely post, Missy. Thank you!

    Nancy C

  93. Vince, I'm celebrating that you're cancer free!!! God bless you for having to go through that wait.


  94. Missy, thanks for your comments. Thankfully I've never been attacked like Mahler was. Phew! But yes, I've had someone say the way you did it won't work, only to hear later down the road that I should have kept it the way it was originally. You're right--in that case I should have stuck with my instincts. I'm a lot more careful about that now!

  95. WOW!! Yes, I've got chill bumps from listening to that magnificent piece of music, Missy--thank you for sharing the story and the link. Such a super-inspiring post today, but then you're such a super-kind person. *smile* ~ I am so blessed in having a wonderful support system of family and friends who encourage me in my writing. For a while I didn't let anyone know I was writing, but after some folks found out they thought it was wonderful! ~ Hugs, Patti Jo

  96. Woo, Debby, you were writing racy stuff back then! :)

    Linnette, that's great on your FB page!

  97. LOL, Nancy! Maybe that brilliant post will turn up. ;)

    My local RWA and ACFW WORD chapters are wonderful! So I know what you mean.

  98. Patti Jo, I'm so glad you have that support! It took me a couple of years to really tell people other than family. It can be scary, because most people immediately ask when your book comes out. :) I guess I could have said, "Uh, in about 12 years."


  99. Ah, what a great post! Thank you so much for giving us inspiration today. I don't have a ton of support with my writing, but my husband is worth a million people backing me up. He's wonderful and I'm so grateful to have him in my corner and in my life. I'm also fortunate to have found Seekerville, which is a powerhouse of support.

  100. Oh my stars.... I'm so far behind over here.

    I'm missing me some Seekerville mid-day fun!

    Darn nice weather. That's what I'm saying. Can't be watching little ones outside and chattin' wi' youse inside.

    And you can hardly even TELL that Missy had bad shingles because the plastic surgery on her face and neck went so well. She used Julie's doctor.

    God is good!

  101. Thank you Missy for the great post and the link to Mahler's symphony. You're right, it does bring tears. I never liked Classical music until 13 years ago when I started working in the OR as a surgical tech. If the radio was on in the OR, one doctor always wanted classical music playing during surgery. Most nurses & techs would remove the radio before the case started so they wouldn't have to listen to it. One day I worked with him & thought, why not?, I turned on Classical music and the doctor was elated and he taught me so much. He could name every piece, the composer, the year it was composed and what the composer was going through in their life at that time. It was phenomenal! I hated saying goodbye to him when I left California. But he gave me a love for Classical music that I will keep forever.

    My WIP is dead in the water right now. Issues with my 11 year old puppy trying to recuperate with mommy at his side constantly. And the inner killjoy is getting to me as well. I need prayers.

    Smiles & Blessings,
    Cindy W.


  102. Annie, that's fantastic! He's all you need! :) And us, here on the blog, of course. :)

  103. LOL, Ruthy. Why'd you have to go and tell?

  104. Cindy, I'm sorry to hear about your dog. I know how time consuming that can be!

    Hang in there and don't let the inner killjoy get to you!

  105. Missy!!! I'm at 303 on my FB page! I'm Snoopy Dancing! LOL

    Now I'm off to do SpeedBo. Anybody want to join me?

  106. MISSY!!! Oh, man, I am running late today, so please forgive me!! LOVED this blog and the story about Mahler -- SO very inspiring!! And I listened to the end of that piece and agree that it is SO emotionally stirring, that I, too, had tears in my eyes!

    It is SO much fun (and SO necessary) to read stories like that for true inspiration -- THANK YOU!!


  107. p.s. Just now saw Vince's GREAT NEWS about NO cancer - - Praise the Lord!!!! (I can certainly identify with waiting to hear results on serious health concerns--the worrying can take a toll...) ~ SO glad you received wonderful news, Vince!!! ~ Blessings, PJ

  108. I'm so excited! I got 4,036 words in today!!! :D

  109. Wow, Linnette!! Great numbers on FB and on your wip today!! :)

    Julie, I'm so glad you were able to stop by!

    Patti Jo, I agree. I've had a couple of those scares, and they're no fun. Such a relief when you get good news.

  110. Missy you are a woman of untold talent and depth. Stunning piece, very powerful.

    It's funny. I don't know my way around classical music to save my life as far as selecting pieces, but if I listen to enchanting movements, I scribble down the proper info and investigate.

    Thanks for sharing the music and the words of wisdom regarding Speedbo. Yes, we're in the final stretch.

    Is this where strains of the 1812 Overature filter in?

  111. Speedbo Report

    Stranded Edit Project
    Project Goal:
    Edit 55,500 words

    March 19, 2012
    Words edited or written today: 2758
    Total words to date: 9163
    Words to go: 46336
    Percent Left: 83.49%
    Time Left: 70.58%
    Running: Behind Schedule

    “I now think that editing is where the real writing occurs.”

  112. Ducking in just under the wire because I shorted out my second keyboard in 3 weeks. ouch

    Thank you for sharing the beautiful story and music, Missy. I really enjoyed it.

  113. WOW!!! What a powerful post!!! I'm so glad I made time for this!!

    Thank you, Missy, for the inspiration and encouragement!

  114. Classical music in itself is uplifting. Such beauty & joy.

  115. Yes, Audra! I love the 1812 Overture. As you can tell, I love pieces that end huge. :)

  116. Vince, you're so right!! That editing can be the majority of the work. I've discovered that getting down the first draft is the fun part. :)

    Yes, you're a bit behind. But it won't be impossible to catch up! Now that you have the worry of the cancer scare off your mind, you'll be able to focus better.

  117. MaryC, ouch is right on the keyboards! Are you suspecting it's your magnetic personality??


  118. Martha and Marybelle, I'm glad you stopped by!

  119. Thank you, Missy. This is so inspiring. Thank you for sharing Mahler's symphony with us.
    Never give up!

  120. It is so important to push away the negative voices and embrace the positing voices.
    Thanks for your positive post/voice here!