Photo Courtesy of National Telefilm Associates - Picture in the Public DomainThe need for acceptance and validation reside on almost spiritual levels within our psyches. We crave other's approval, especially when it is difficult to acquire. Are we on the right track? Do we have what it takes? Do we matter? Did our Life Purpose walk on by us one sunny day laughing over its shoulder as we failed to reach out and snag it in time.
Did we miss it?
I'm afraid I don't have the answers. How can we ever be sure that we're doing what we were supposed to be doing? Life, especially American life, has so many choices and any one of them could change our lives forever. It's like we're caught in "It's a Wonderful Life" with no Clarence Odbody angel to give us a glimpse into a different "what if" life?
But writing isn't about success or validation, but rather the overflowing of a bubbling soul fountain. For many writers, it's not so much a question of if as much as it is a question of how. We write because we must.
And when the acceptance come, for surely it must if we keep at it, we embrace that affirmation and for just a moment, we laugh at the clouds, dance in the rain, and revel in the glory of knowing for just a moment, someone, somewhere thought we got it right.
I was recently accepted into three MFA programs, Antioch University of Los Angeles, Pine Manor College, and Goddard College. I know their acceptance of my writing is at least due in part to the fact that I will be paying one of them a substantial amount of money. But not all applicants are accepted into these programs. My writing had something that caught their attention. And in that, there is encouragement and affirmation.
"Priscilla Cash's manuscript . . . exemplifies solid character development and promising attention to vivid scenes. She also has a knack for creating tension." - Admissions Committee of the Creative Writing Programs of Pine Manor College.
So, I tuck the acceptance letter back in it's folder and walk away with my head a little higher, my step a little quicker, and my heart a little lighter.