The writing life, for the unpublished.
I won a contest! Squeeeee!
I got the feedback. My writing resembles a hairball on the kitchen counter.
What I have to keep telling myself is that writing for publication is not the same as making an A in freshman comp. I may have a good grasp of the basic rules, but now I'm competing with a world full of talented writers in the attempt to attract attention. It's another level of the writing game. Those who quit will never know how close they came.
Last night, I won a tennis match. When we shook hands, my opponent said, "You're stubborn."
"7-5, 6-4? You are, too," I said.
"Yeah, but you're more stubborn."
I treasure that. It takes me to the next writing session.
Here's a little advice on self-discipline from James Scott Bell.