The support of family
My parents were both born in the same year, 1932, at either end of the same month (July). They turned eighty-three this year. However, mum still has these brilliant lucid moments where the sun shines through the clouds.
While in my twenties and early thirties, I was determined to follow my dream to become a writer. I worked low-paying jobs and sometimes I ran out of money. Each time, mum and dad would let me return to the family homestead. Or one of my sisters, or my brother, would open their doors to welcome me to live with them. The support I've received from my family has been unfailing. It's something for which I will always be grateful. How did my family keep the faith in me? When all they could see was a closed door, or a do not disturb sign? I don't know. But what I do know is that they never questioned me once. They extended a generosity of belief in my direction that never wavered.
So I wrote and I painted in isolation a lot of times, protected by my family.
Every rejection letter that came in for a story caused me stress, because it meant neither my parents, nor my family, would get the validation they deserved. Yet they still welcomed me back in whenever I needed them. Their faith in me carried on regardless.
A special moment
This year, in May, I was in the Coromandel, visiting my parents. It was dusk. Dad was building the fire. Mum asked how my book is coming - as she does most visits. And I told her.
I realized there was something I needed to say. I said, "Mum, I want to thank you and dad for always believing in me. Thank you for letting me live with you, and write throughout my life. I could never have done it without you. I'm only here where I am with my writing today because of the unconditional support you and the whole family have given me. I want you to know how much I appreciate it."
All I know for sure is, I stand where I am today because of my family, and because of my parents' love. Thank you, thank you all. I love you.
Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. –Calvin Coolidge.
Either marry your work – take it seriously and do it every day – or date it – write only when you feel like it – but know which you are doing and the repercussions of both. ~Anonymous
Mum with me, at 16 months
If you’re going to try, go all the / way. / otherwise, don’t even start. Do it, do it / all the way… you’ll do it / despite rejection and the / worst odds / and it will be better than / anything else / you can imagine. ~C. Bukowski
You can never quit. Quitters never win and winners never quit. ~Ted Turner
You know what you call the writer who never gives up? Published. ~J.A. Konrath