MARIELENA ZUNIGA: ON HOPE
Word of the week. Hope. Many are struggling to find hope today. Thread by thread, the already-frayed fabric of our economy unravels. Loved ones out of work. Homes lost. Where do we find hope, especially as writers, in the midst of that?
Over the years I’ve struggled writing my fiction books, one written, many half-written. At points in the process, I’d lose hope. That sabotaging inner voice would tell me, “This isn’t any good. Who would want to buy this?” Rejections would prove me right. Then would come that rare external validation, a positive, scribbled comment from an editor or publisher, or winning a regional prize, and hope would rebound.
While positive feedback is important, a belief in ourselves as writers – an inner validation — is even more critical. That’s where hope kicks in. We need to dig deep, know that despite setbacks or rejections, we have our own unique voice to share with the world. We can be published.
Have I succeeded? Not always. But at the end of the day, I know hopelessness is not an option. When we give in to our fears – as with the economy – we have only perpetuated more of the same. As writers, we must not only have hope, we must give it. We do that by writing words that teach, inspire, or distract readers from their troubles by leading them into worlds of mystery, love or laughter. So, yes, I do hope. For the economy. For all writers to be published. And I go forward – with apologies to the President – with the audacity of hope.
What Marielena’s reading now:
BACK SPIN by Harlen Coben
GROUNDSWELL: WINNING IN A WORLD TRANSFORMED BY SOCIAL TECHNOLOGIES by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff.