Sunday, May 21, 2006

Faith and karma

So a week or two ago, I did something good for someone I don't know. Don't put that halo on me yet; it was completely motivated by self-interest, and in fact I feel kind of cheesy about the way I handled it.

But as it turns out, karma takes a dim view of self-recrimination, and encourages acts of kindness regardless of the motivation.

At least, that's how it seems to me after this weekend, when a couple people who are very important to me made it clear how much faith they have in me, and how far they are willing to go to help me.

One of them, out of the blue, offered to help me get a foot in the door with someone who could help my writing career. My mentor, Jenny, offered to introduce me to her agent, who is amazing and fierce and who I have been stalking in the literary sense for some months now.

It could all come to nothing - she could hate what I write (or worse! be indifferent), but trust me when I say that it's a big foot in a very heavy door, and I am a very lucky girl.

The other one is C, who is a very calm guy. C's not that excitable, and when I came to him with this news, he sort of smiled and said "Way to go" while I was turning cartwheels and running naked down Queen Anne Avenue.

Of course I gave him hell about it, because I felt lonely, all alone in the Excite-o boat like that. I wanted him to jump up and scream and flash the sign of the horns and open himself to the sky too.

Which is when he told me how much faith he has in me, how much he believes in me and my book and my voice and my drive, and how he sort of expects people to have faith in me because duh, talented.

He also pointed out that he doesn't get all hyped up when this stuff happens because I do that just fine on my own, and someone needs to keep the boat floating while I'm waving the flags and tooting the horns. And that is very true, and after he said it I felt far less lonely.

I'm not doing it justice, but trust me when I say that by the end of it, I was completely awash. It's terribly potent, having the person you love tell you they believe in you. Particularly when they know how hard you've worked, and how difficult it is to succeed at whatever it is you are trying to do. That always comes across hollow if they don't really believe in you, but when C said it - and kept saying it - it rang out like a bell.

In book news: I've rounded the corner on the first act. I'm sure this seems very slow to all of you, but about a month ago I did something critical: I deleted almost the entire book, except for the first 20 pages or so. I reimagined and reoutlined, and that has made all the difference.

Since then I've been writing like a house on fire. And now Act 1 is done and I'm starting on Act 2. I'm also getting critiques from two talented writers I know - oh, make that three if Eileeny joins in - so that's all good.

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