When I was in kindergarten, I knew I'd be a paleontologist.  When I was in second grade, I knew I'd be an artist.  The only one thing I know I am now is a writer.  It's as easy-as terrifying-as that.

"Why should I shy away.  If fate is kind or cruel, man still must try."

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

I came across this quote in Early British Literature in college and it branded my heart.  Since then, I've turned to Sir Gawain's wisdom time after time to grow my skills as a writer and to establish myself as a freelancer.  My four years' of journalism work, position as a student writer for Clarion University of Pennsylvania and publication in different magazines and literary journals have let me collect hundreds of bylines and craft my name as a writer. 

 

But it's only by working through dozens of project rejections that I've developed as a writer.  If I never learned to try, as Sir Gawain did, against astonishing odds, my work would never

  1. be published in Highlights children magazine (December 2018)

  2. appear in Z Publishing House's Pennsylvania's Best Emerging Poets (2017)

  3. be presented at international and regional conferences (Sigma Tau Delta 2016, 2017; PASSHE Women's Consortium 2017; EAPSU 2017)

  4. be published in The Clarion News, The Oil City Derrick, The Butler Eagle, ClarionExtra.com and VenangoExtra.com

  5. be published by Kirkus Media book reviews (2018)

All of which has happened.  Rejection is painful.  Sometimes, it's downright discouraging.  But it teaches you how to improve.  And it's taught me how to be one hell of a writer.

 

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