Keep Writing, It Will Eventually Pay Off

Very few writers write just for the joy of it. If we’re truthful, we want recognition. We write stories and poems to share with the world and we want people to like what we write.

After submitting to contests and publications and receiving rejection after rejection it makes us question our abilities. We’re told to keep working at it. Someday, your efforts will be rewarded. Well, I can now say they were right.

I wrote a poem about nature. It’s layered with imagery from the natural world from trees and flowers to the moon’s stage. From sounds of animals and scents of the night to the inevitability of death. I worked very hard on this particular poem with revisions beyond count. When I released it into the world I hoped someone would see the beauty I tried so hard to convey.

Someone did.

I won the OCW Poet Laureate Award. They announced the name of the poem before my name and I was so flabbergasted that time slowed down. My friend Tamara turned to me with excitement and I sort of floated toward the front to receive my prize. The coveted 1st place award.

Suddenly, my hours of sitting at a computer, refining line after line paid off. I’m reminded of Goran Ivanisevic when he won Wimbledon. He said even if he never won another tournament no one could take away the fact that he was a Wimbledon Champion. Even if I never win or publish another work, I can forever say I’m an award winning poet.

Me and Arkansas' Poet Laureate Peggy Vining

Me and Arkansas’ Poet Laureate Peggy Vining