Some of you who have followed our blog for a while may remember earlier posts I've written (Revision and Character Growth - http://rt19writers.blogspot.com/2012/04/revision-and-character-growth.html) (When Is the End, the End: An Update - http://rt19writers.blogspot.com/2011/10/when-is-end-end-update.html#comment-form) (When Is the End, the End? - http://rt19writers.blogspot.com/2011/08/when-is-end-end.html#comment-form) about the current novel I've written... Or should I say rewriting... Or should I say have rewritten again and again and again.
So as not to bore you, I'll just say that all posts had do with the fact that I've been writing this novel for a long time and many things about the story have changed, including the age of my characters and the focus of my story. The premise of the posts went unwritten. .. Remain persistent. Don't give up on something you believe in, especially if that something has promise.
Last Friday, after looking out the window most of the morning from my writer's desk into a rain-filled sky, I received an e-mail, a reward for my persistence . My young adult novel, Dirty Secrets, was picked as the winner of this year’s SCBWI Work-in-Progress Grant for a contemporary novel. http://www.scbwi.org/Pages.aspx/Work-In-Progress-Grants
Wow! I nearly fell out of my chair.
I'm still reeling a bit now, still amazed at the accomplishment, because it was completely unexpected. I had hoped of course that the story was strong enough to receive some type of recognition, a letter of merit or honorable mention. This completely blew away my expectations.
Now, as I try to float slowly back to earth, I need to remind myself that the reward is not an excuse to stop working. In fact, the work still ahead is what allows me to continue to focus on my main goal, publication.
There's more to write about the award, and the road which led me to apply, but I'll save that for another time.
In the meantime, for all of you who may be feeling a bit low, a bit down on your luck because you haven't heard from an editor or agent, keep this story in mind as one of hope, one that will shed a little light onto an otherwise darkened landscape.