Monday, June 25, 2012

Are You a Cold and Timid Soul? By Linda S. Glaz

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”
-Theodore Roosevelt

My brother was an incredibly talented man and never knew it. He was an amazing writer. Wrote VERY much like Rod Serling. And, he was a prolific writer. An idea one minute, and a complete story the next.

One day, in a particularly courageous moment, he decided to send what was my favorite out to a publisher. In short time he received a rejection. When I asked him about it, he simply said, “They don’t like my writing.” End of story, end of writing career. Not one more word on paper.

He accepted only defeat and on the word of just one person. My heart broke for him, because he was a brilliant writer and had only to keep the courage, await the victory, stand firm in the knowledge that his was a worthy cause.

How many others give up with the first rejection and remain cold and timid souls instead of jumping into the arena and fighting to victory? Sadly, there are those who will never even know the triumph of at least trying. Of giving their all in the face of criticism.

Most of us can tell those who do, however. You stand tall, your face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood of determination as you hold your first contract in your hand.


Meghan Carver said...

Just what I needed this Monday morning. Thank you!

Davalyn Spencer said...

Awesome post. We need to hear things like this. An amazing book along the same line, Waking the Dead by John Eldredge.

Thank you Linda.

sally apokedak said...

Wonderful post. Love that Teddy Roosevelt quote. And I have a brother who sounds much like your brother. Super smart and talented, but has never measured up, in his opinion. He's taken criticism to mean he's not good enough. So sad to see such talent wasted.

Timothy Fish said...

We don’t all want the same kind of success. One cannot be a successful writer without giving up something else. So, for some people, a rejection letter comes as a relief.

Heather Day Gilbert said...

Loved this line: "You stand tall, your face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood of determination as you hold your first contract in your hand."

I'm convinced that most books that are awesome weren't embraced with open arms right at the get-go. And many genius writers weren't recognized while they were alive (Emily Dickinson springs to mind). We just have to keep writing and keep knocking on doors. Great post!

Linda Glaz said...

It's my favorite quote of all times. I love the call to courage. If only we all nurtured that type of courage and honor in our hearts, what a change we would be to our world.

Jennifer said...

What a wonderful quote! I have been struggling with doubt this morning in my writing and I needed to hear that. Thanks so much for your encouraging words!

Linda Glaz said...

Jennifer, think of yourself as the matador or the Ultimate Fighter who KNOWS that he/she will win. Don't think "maybe in time" be firm in your resolve. Then, when you stand at the end of life, you will know you tried. The success is not in being published, but in telling the story. The publication is the bonus!