Some of you may have noticed that I've had the same book on the right for the whole history of this blog (and for quite a few years before that, too). I've written books for other people, and some of them have done quite well; but despite 6 mss. out there, no published books of my own.
At first, this bothered me a lot, and even affected my confidence -- I didn't think I was a bad writer, but I did think I hadn't found my niche and never would. And then, I just let it go. I wrote what I wanted, when I wanted to, and -- aside from an occasional pang about a novel that never sold -- I came to refer to it as "poor ______" (heroine's name) -- poor Camm. She was a neglected child in the book and now is in real life too -- I really and truly stopped minding, even about her.
This was all I am sure helped by having had freelance work -- enough to live on. I feel grateful and lucky and (last week) finally felt financially secure enough to give some money to causes I believe in. One was CASA, a group that recruits and trains people to be court-appointed advocates for abused or neglected children. Children who have such an advocate, statistically, are much more likely to finish high school, stay out of jail, and stay with the same foster family. The site doesn't say they are also less likely to be abused again: maybe this is assumed? If anyone knows of other good groups that help abused children, and homeless children, please tell about them in the comments....I'm trying to find a group that just gives money to homeless families so they can get apartments or move into hotels. AS someone said and it makes sense to me:
"What poor people need is money."
The other group I found that seems really great is in the UK. They're called SOS and what they do is gather groups of 6 or 7 orphans, build them a house, and hire someone to be their mother. The ideas is that they will stay together as a family unit for life. This group was recommended by the Dali Lama and that's good enough for me!
The day after I made the donations, I got a call saying someone was going to publish one of my manuscripts.
It may be just timing (friends have said, and truly, I think, that getting published is a lot about that -- the right editor at the right time). I believe that these events (the letting go and even the giving and then getting the call) could be causally related, too -- that the shift in attitude helped it happen. Whether it was or not, I am going to keep trying to let go of things, keep giving, and (when I have something to say, not otherwise) keep writing.