Friday, December 3, 2010

Quiet Courage

"A big man is one who makes us feel bigger when we are with him."
~ John C. Maxwell 


This week, Natalie Whipple wrote a post--an amazingly powerful and deeply honest post--that sparked a chain reaction across the blogosphere. It was painful to read. It was real and beautiful and courageous and all kinds of admirable.  It was also terrifying.

Beth Revis wrote a post, too, also full of naked truth and courage.  So did Candyland, in a post about "What If???" And Elana Johnson in a post about the subjectivity of the publishing industry. And Susan Quinn about failing the right way.

And what did I learn from all of these posts?  That I love each of these ladies even more than I thought I did!  We ALL feel what each of them expressed.  We ALL share the same feelings of insecurity and doubt, of jealousy and fear and sometimes hopelessness.  But we don't all own it, share it, use it to help others feel stronger.

I felt less alone when I read these posts. I felt sympathetic--and for Natalie, heartbroken--but I also felt inspired and strengthened and emboldened. And I felt tremendous awe and respect for their willingness to share personal fears with us.

They are big writers, and they made me feel bigger for having visited them and shared in their posts.

Thank you, ladies!

33 comments:

Jennie Englund said...

I, too, loved these posts, Shannon. It takes guts to tell it like it really is: guts, and truth.

We are all together.

Heidi Willis said...

I read Natalie's and just about cried for her... and for all the authors in her place.

I read Beth's and thought about all the people who always think "If I just... I would be happy." We're conditioned somehow to think the publishing business is a linear line that everyone has to follow. Write, get agent, get book deal, get published... like one naturally follows the one before.

When really there are so many variables, paths, and juts in the road. We are each in our own unique journey. I admire everyone who opens their hearts to the heartache of this publishing thing, and even more when they admit it isn't what they thought it might be.

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Amen!

Mr. Whimsy is like that. That's why he's loved by all.

Great quotes :)

Caroline Starr Rose said...

Agreed. I feel bolstered when others are honest about their experiences.

Jessica Bell said...

Definitely. I'm in awe of people who aren't afraid to be so open. It truly is a blessing. Thanks for the reminder. I'll have to check out Beth's as I haven't read hers. Have a great weekend!

Shari said...

Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed reading others posts. This whole writing process is hard. But for some reason we can't not do it. Go figure.

salarsenッ said...

I will ditto your thank you and then pass it on to you. Thank you, Shannon for being so amazingly supportive to your followers.

K.M. Weiland said...

Wonderful quotes. The deepest power of writing is, I think, the sharing of the human experience. We're all so unique - and yet we're all just the same. It's an enlightening and comforting journey through the world of stories to reach that discovery.

Lenny Lee* said...

hi miss shannon! sharing yourself out with others is pretty hard specailly if your feeling way down. but i gotta say in sharing my stuff just saying it was good for me it got me lots stronger and got me knowing im not alone and how much people could care about me and that keeps me trying. i didnt read what those ladies said but i could feel it was really good and it got to lots of people right in their heart.
...big hugs from lenny

Catherine Denton said...

Thank you for sharing these. So courageous and inspiring!!!

The Golden Eagle said...

It's amazing to read the stories of bloggers . . . and also uplifting, to see their own courage and determination.

Raquel Byrnes said...

Oi! Those were hard to read, but very good to know about. Thanks for sharing these blogs!
Edge of Your Seat Romance

Christine Fonseca said...

I felt the same way - and so fortunate to call many of them my friends. Hugs to you!

Elana Johnson said...

Oh my heck! I love that quote. I love it with all my heart and liver. It's going on my wall of awesome.

:) *hugs*

Kittie Howard said...

Like others in our blogging community, those posts affected me. In the end, though, the biggest effect was the impact of how these gals had the strength and guts to write what they did, the painful truth behind so much. These gals are true heroes, strong and compassionate, and have used the pen to accomplish more than a sword ever could.

Diane said...

Great posts to remind us that none of us are perfect and we're all in this together. :O) Happy Weekend!

Kimberly Franklin said...

You won a little something on one of my contests!

The winners are listed in this post! Congrats!!

KarenG said...

I had read Natalie's but not the others. Going there now. Thanks for the links.

Old Kitty said...

It's so lovely that so many people have drawn strength and gotten courage from these posts!

Take care
x

Corey Schwartz said...

Wow, you phrased that so well! I'm sure they are all happy to hear that they made such an impact

Frankie Diane Mallis said...

Yes! Those posts were amazing!

Candyland said...

I'm with Elana in saying Oh my heck. that's the quote to love by. We're only human, with dreams. Dreams take work. I think it's easy to be consumed by the BIG success stories that we start comparing to our own dream, our own work and journey.

But the best part about being a writer? going through it with people like you.

Susan J. Reinhardt said...

Hi Shannon -

I read Natalie's heart-wrenching post. It makes me wonder how many are out there, licking their wounds in silence.

Scripture says to weep with those who weep. I'm weeping with Natalie tonight and grateful for her courage to share her story.

Blessings,
Susan

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

I love that quote! I was reading and nodding at your post, thinking, "Yes! Exactly!" And then I saw my name there, next to those amazing ladies.

Thanks for making my day! :)

And thanks for always being an uplift as well! The support in the blogosphere is an awesome thing to behold.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

After reading Natalie's post, I think I'm happy on my side of the query fence. At least I still have hope. ;)

Guinevere said...

Thanks for linking to these - I missed some of them when they first came out. Natalie's post is really raw and heartbreaking, but I appreciate her honesty so much. I think it's wonderful when writers open up and talk about the dark side of our world - we tend to feel like we have to be all happy and joy-joy-joy about the work all the time, and it's such a relief to know that others struggle sometimes too.

Love the quote at the start of your post - I might have to tape that to my computer. :) Thanks to you and all the ladies for blogging so boldly.

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Great quote, Shannon! Thanks for all the wonderful links! They were all exceptional in their own ways.

Susan Fields said...

I just read Natalie's post - wow, that's powerful! And you're right, that's quiet courage, what a lovely way to describe it.

Shelley Sly said...

Very powerful posts. I love the honesty (and I also love that quote about quiet courage.) Thanks for sharing!

Vicki Rocho said...

I'd missed a couple of those. Thanks for highlighting them.

Honesty makes for compelling reading...but is SO hard to do on a public forum.

Tamara Narayan said...

I'll have to check these articles out. I've had a tough week in queryland. I posted the story on my blog today.

Heather said...

I've read each of these posts and couldn't agree more. They are wonderful, honest posts by wonderful writers. They're also great reminders that we're in this together.

Susanne Drazic said...

Thanks for sharing the links, Shannon. I felt so bad for Natalie when I read her post. What courage to share what she has been through.

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