Can you imagine how those U.S. hockey players felt when they stepped onto the ice in Lake Placid for the first time, already slated as the underdog? Dave Anderson, a columnist for the New York Times wrote the day before the match, "Unless the ice melts, or unless the United States team or another team performs a miracle…..the Russians are expected to easily win the Olympic gold medal for the sixth time in the last seven tournaments."
But they endured. They kept going at it, game after game, until they achieved victory.
At a particular time when I was receiving rejection after rejection, my mother told me a story from when I was about 4 years old. As she loaded a cart full of food on the conveyor belt at the food store, I asked her what color lipstick the woman in front of us was wearing. She replied red. I pressed her further, asking her if the color was more like an apple or a strawberry. She told me
I could describe it any way I wanted.
From that story, I realized it takes perseverance to believe in your dreams. During your day, whether it be at the office or at home with your family, don’t forget to spend time with your craft. Even if you jot a few sentences down before bed, or write an idea for a scene while eating your lunch in the office. Think about your plot, think about your characters. Take that second to decide if the lipstick your heroine is wearing is fuscia or plumberry.
If you don’t have a spot designated to write, maneuver your living room furniture around to find a small alcove you could convert into a mini-office. Sit at the kitchen table where the breeze grabs you just the right way. Dig out the lawn chair and take it to the park with a pad of paper.
Be creative. Wherever you feel the vibe to write is where you should be.
Make your dream happen. Keeping writing and keep reaching for your next goal, whether it be a first contract, a new query, or finding an agent.
A Daughter’s Promise, by debut novelist Christine Clemetson, is a sweeping love story of sacrifice and unexpected hope. In war torn Italy, 1944, Serene Moneto made a promise to her dying mother—a promise so haunting that it directs the course of her life. When she chooses to save an American soldier from death, she risks everything—her name, her life, and capture by the Germans. Finding forbidden love with this soldier tears her world apart. Against the backdrop of a war raging right outside her door, can she choose happiness? Despite the promise she made those years ago?See the trailer at http://www.christineclemetson.com/trailers.html
They both knew Serene’s turn had come. She took in a deep breath and touched his arms in a stiff embrace. She hugged him the way she had rehearsed in her head over and over, the way a mother would hug her son going off to war.
"I don’t care who sees," he said gruffly, pulling her closer. He pushed her chin up with his
fingertips, and bent his head to kiss her.
She took his lips, his body, all of him, into her heart for the last time. Feeling the rapid beating in his chest, she fought the urge to mold her most intimate part against his.
When their lips parted, his warm breath on her neck made her body shiver. Wrapping her arms around his neck, she buried her face into his jacket. "I’m not ashamed about
what I said to you last night or what happened between us." Her voice cracked. "It’s a sin, I know, but it was the most beautiful—"
"Ashamed? I don’t think I’ll ever have that kind of love again."
Trembling, she stood back a little, clinging to her emotions with the delicacy of a spider web.
"But you were right. We made the most logical decision."
"Jesus, Serry. I want to tell you so bad that I—"
"You’re all set, then?" Sam said, coming back into the house.
Serene let go of Miles, letting her one finger intertwine with one of his pinky fingers. She couldn’t let him go.
Slowly, he released her and went to the door, putting one foot on the outside pavement before hesitating and turning back. His eyes were red, and she clutched the stair banister to keep from running to him. How much she loved him would be a secret
she’d take to the grave.
Carrying a bottle of whiskey, Marcus passed him at the door and gave him a friendly slap on the back. "I came to give you a goodbye, Coulson."
Serene stood up straight and froze.
Miles jerked himself away. "Change of heart about me?"
His answer was Marcus’ deep kiss on Serene’s cheek and an arm around her waist. "I realized, Coulson, that I’m proud of her for taking the responsibility for you. I thought it was about time that I offered my apologies for the undiplomatic way I acted. We’re all in this for a cause, no? Why don’t we share a bottle to celebrate?"
"No, your change of heart doesn’t rub me the right way." Miles offered an apologetic glance to Serene and then shifted his gaze back to Marcus. "You hurt her, and I’ll hurt you. You understand me?"
"Have a safe trip," Marcus drawled.
Serene watched the driver help him in and her knees weakened. As the truck’s engine started, she braced herself against the wall.
"Don’t worry. Serene. Just think of this as a wedding present from me. No more worries about your American. He is well now and gone for good. Your only thanks is to marry me."
She couldn’t hear him. Her throat ached and she made no effort to wipe the tears spilling freely from her eyes. She started for the door, but he grabbed her by the shoulders.
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