Today, my thoughts kept returning to the very apt posts by Sara and Liz about the "Why not me?" thought pattern--the "When is it my turn? Is it now? OK, how about now?" thoughts that can circulate in an unpublished (or published) writer's head. In the face of another novel rejection from an agent today, I found those "why-not-mes" sneaking their way back into my brain, gumming up the works, preventing both logical evaluation of the situation and any further creative work for the day.
I wonder how others cope with the "why-not-mes." I have a few different ways. Sometimes a nap helps, or a good long visit to the gym, if I have time for either of those. Whatever I do, I try to take a little bit of a break from whatever is prompting the self-doubt, and do something else I enjoy. Today, I tried to remind myself about this week's Art By Committee (here's last week's) over at Gurney Journey, a blog I'm really starting to enjoy reading. I sent in a much better drawing (in my opinion) this time, so I'm hoping to look less lame next to all those professional pencil-monkeys.
Blogging, obviously, is something else I can use to get my mind off things. I'm hoping to get to a few book reviews tonight or tomorrow for Readers' Rants. That helps, as does checking out other people's great posts and exploring sites that are new to me. I found out about a new bi-weekly children's book newsletter this week, as well as (via TadMack) a really hilarious site called Boys Rule! Boys Read!. Do NOT miss their ongoing March Madness book tournament and other fun book-related activities. Sara posted a great art-related nonfiction review today for Nonfiction Monday (check out the roundup for more titles).
And, sadly, sometimes there's nothing like a shocking news story to bring you out of your own wallowing. The idea of a string of teen suicides makes me shudder, but it also reminds me that part of the reason I write for a teen audience is that I think--I hope--that reading my work might someday help someone through a tough time, or distract someone from their own troubles. I escaped into books a lot during my childhood and teen years, and I honestly believe that a book can be a friend, a comfort, an anchor. And maybe, just maybe, if I get back to work and plug away, I'll get that chance...