Quite a Good Sunday

I had a surprise this afternoon when I switched the computer on and it worked. Sorry, only joking, but based on yesterday’s post I expect some of you heaved a sigh of relief. I did have a surprise, but it wasn’t that. I had been sent an email by Country Life, which happens regularly, and in it they were running a number of articles about Northamptonshire, which is becoming known as the new Cotswolds. Strange, I thought, I’m sure I mentioned that several years ago in a post titled Cotswolds or Notswolds?

Looks like I’m in the forefront of modern trends and thinking. That was a surprise as I’m not usually a trendsetter. However, as usual, I am at the back of the queue when it comes to getting paid for my prescient brilliance. I just hope it doesn’t lead to the ruination of Northamptonshire as it fills up with Londoners.

Then I turned on my emails. I had an email from Failed Haiku. They have accepted a haibun for next month. Out of the submissions I’ve sent out i ย the last couple of months that now means numbers two and four have now accepted haibun. One and three have yet to reply. Five and six are just submissions of haiku and I don’t hold out much hope for them, but I won’t get better if I don’t try.

I am, as I have said before, not good at haiku, and try to disguise the fact by writing a bit of prose to dress it up, thus creating a haibun.

I once read an article on how you should set yourself up to fail because you learn more from failure than you do from success. Unfortunately I have also seen articles saying you learn more from success than from failure. The only thing I know about failure is that the more you fail, the more you get used to it. It’s all very well telling yourself it isn’t personal or that it’s just an editor’s preference. You can even make a book of your successes so that you can leaf through it to buoy yourself up when things get tough (and I confess that I have done this). But the best thing of all is just toughening yourself up by practicing being rejected.

I am currently employing the same theory that I used when I was a salesman. If you have to make twenty calls to get one sale you need to get the nineteen calls out of the way. So I’ve decided to submit more and see if it results in more acceptances. If it doesn’t I will have to have a serious look at the quality of my output.

Only one photo tonight.A combination of the old editor and an old computer meant it took seventeen minutes to load the featured image. Life is too short to load a second. In fact the day is too short to load another.

24 thoughts on “Quite a Good Sunday

  1. Helen

    Seems like you are taking rejection well. I canโ€™t think of anyone who likes the feeling of failing to get what you hope for but you plan to submit more seems a good one.

  2. jodierichelle

    Wow – Congratulations on more acceptances! The rule stands – If you don’t submit, you won’t get accepted. Perhaps “the more you submit, the more you get accepted” is also a rule?

    Because I’m nosy, I want to know if that picture is your handwriting. Do you write longhand? I have NEVER been able to write much on a keyboard. I need a pencil and paper to get any worthwhile thoughts out of my brain. I wrote a whole novel in spiral bound notebooks and had to retype it into a computer because I couldn’t combine the steps.

    Ah, we are odd little things.

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      If I write on the computer the internal critic cuts in and I find myself trapped in the cycle of rewriting the first two lines forever.

      I can blog from the keyboard and once I have a few notes I can write articles direct from the keyboard.

      For poetry and haibun I write longhand and yes, that is my writing in that picture. The writing flows better when I use pan and paper, and it is better when I use a fountain pen than when I use a biro. I don’t know why.

      But that, of course means that I have the chore of copy typing, and a lot of things don’t actually make the cut.

      That’s before you run into the problem that I can’t always read my own writing…

      1. jodierichelle

        Ah, exactly. I can relate to every bit of that. Except I prefer a mechanical pencil over a fountain pen. SO good to know what works, though. For years I had no idea what I needed!

      2. quercuscommunity Post author

        I used to use mechanical pencils because they flow nicely, but Julia kept taking them. She has no respect for the artistic temperament :-).

        I am relieved to know it isn’t just me that needs to write by hand.

  3. tootlepedal

    Usually when my computer slows down it is either my security provider being far too officious or program updates which I haven’t asked for. It is hard to bear so you have my full sympathy.

    As far as failure and success goes the only lesson that I have really learned in life is that if you practise doing something badly, then all you get better at is doing it badly. Unfortunately, although I know that this is true, I have great difficulty in putting it into practice.

      1. tootlepedal

        Funnily enough, when I see junior rugby coaching or football practices, doing it wrong seems to be accepted quite happily. Perhaps you had better coaches.

  4. Lavinia Ross

    Keep making those submissions, Quercus. Robert Pirsig’s “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” was rejected 127 times before being accepted, and then went on to become a best seller.


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