"Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th."
According to Dictionary.com, perseverance is a noun that means a steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.
And here is what my guest, author Gayle M. Irwin, has to say about this trait, which is especially valuable for writers, and which also plays a part in her new book, Walking In Trust : Lessons Learned with my Blind Dog.
Perseverance: A Writer’s Best Friend
A Guest Post by Gayle M. Irwin
Writers need perseverance. Whether we hurdle fear of rejection, bump into the wall of writer’s block, or navigate the time-sucking venue of social media, we writers must be persistent in our endeavors just like a farmer who plants and harvests – we know there are many obstacles, and layers to the process, yet what an incredible harvest we will reap when we persevere!
People are starving, and not just for food. They want information and entertainment. Writers today are fortunate to have a variety of outlets for their words and thereby feed a starving society. There are numerous options that twenty, even ten, years ago were hardly even considered, various venues through which writers can express themselves. Blogs, editorial newspaper pieces, letters to the editor, magazine articles, and online commentaries are just a few of those added venues. Even book publishing has changed dramatically: there is Kindle, other types of e-books, and many self-publishing options in addition to the traditional book publishing path. No matter what publishing avenue a writer pursues, however, the common ingredient needed is perseverance.
I am fortunate to have witnessed many examples of perseverance and not just among writers. For more than ten years, I shared my life with a blind dog named Sage. There were many challenges, for both my blind dog and for me. Sage walked into things, like furniture, hedges, and trees. Yet, she did not cower in a corner or sulk in defeat on the living room rug. She persistently ran through the backyard in pursuit of squirrels she heard and smelled. She navigated stairs in the house and walks through the neighborhood. Sage was the catalyst for my book writing: The longtime dream I had of writing a children’s book blossomed as I witnessed numerous lessons – especially about courage and perseverance – from my blind dog.
My first book was published in 2007, a work I used in classrooms and libraries when Sage and I would visit such places, encouraging children to also be brave and persistent in life. I have since published short stories about Sage in editions of Chicken Soup for the Soul and my first adult nonfiction book, Walking in Trust: Lessons Learned with my Blind Dog was released recently by Cladach Publishing. Though the journey has not been easy, it has been rewarding.
Chicken Soup for the Soul received 123 rejections, according to Jack Canfield, co-creator of the beloved books. And Harry Potter received more than 10 rejections before being picked up. These stories have inspired and entertained millions of people around the world, including myself.
I am thankful for the example set by writers and others (including my blind dog). Something or someone inspires you. Don't let that inspiration lie dormant. Never give up. Keep on going like a determined blind dog, sharing your words of wisdom and entertainment with the world!
Thank you for this inspirational guest post, Gayle! Walking in Trust: Lessons Learned with my Blind Dog sounds incredible--I hope to read your stories before too long. As a blogger, I've discovered that perseverance is paramount to success. As an animal lover, I'm aware that our pets can teach us so much, if we're tuned into them. Presently, we have a ginger-colored Persian cat with some health issues, Mugsy. He's affectionate and communicative--and very cute--and we absolutely cherish him. On a different note, as a child I was in awe of my friend's father, who was completely blind but went running and cross-country skiing--nothing stopped him from living life to the fullest! His positive attitude was terrific and inspiring. It's remarkable what can be accomplished through perseverance!
Reader comments welcomed.