April 11, 2011

Affirmation Station

I got a phone call Friday. I was away from my desk at the elementary school office where I work when I heard my cell phone ring. I ran to my desk and looked at the number. Long distance with no name. Since I only had one bar of "signal", I ran out of the office and out the front doors, praying I'd get to answer before it quit ringing. Success! It was the Genesis Historical Romance Contest Coordinator calling to let me know I was a semi-finalist.

I squealed before she got finished. Kinda embarrassing. I even jumped into the air, which would have been really embarrassing if a parent had showed up and seen my display. But that would have been okay. Celebrating is a good thing. But the best thing about a contest win is the affirmation.

Affirmation: The assertion that something exists or is true.

So often we question our calling to write. Are we real writers? Do we have what it takes? Is what we put on paper drivel? Are we like those American Idol contestants who think they can sing, but really can't? 


But really, we don't need a contest win to tell us we are on the right track. God is our Affirmation Station. He is the one we get our worth from. He is the one whose opinion really matters. If He has called you, He will send you little affirmations along the way...


You get a note in the mail from an online friend, encouraging you in your writing. Someone leaves a comment on your blog, thanking you for what you had to say that day. You finish a chapter and feel God's pleasure in it--you know it is good. 


While a contest win is great affirmation, it's not the ultimate affirmation. Judging is subjective and the next round of judges may hate my writing. You just never know.  Many go on to make the SALE without finaling in a contest. Katie Ganshert's post today speaks of this very thing.  


For those of you who didn't final, check out The Writer's Alley for some  Post-Contest Blues C.H.O.C.O.L.A.T.E.


And for those of you who did final, check out tomorrow's post at The Writer's Alley for a tongue-in-cheek checklist for celebrating your semi-final.


How have you been affirmed lately? It doesn't have to be writing related!   

21 comments:

  1. Congratulations on your good news! My affirmation this morning? Ink is rubbing his face on my hands as I try to type. Yup, I'm loved.

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  2. Congratulations on your Genesis semi-final, Sherrinda! I'm sooo happy for you--and thankful you received this affirmation.

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  3. My affirmation comes through people like you, Sherrinda! CONGRATULATIONS!!!

    Just walking next to you semi-finalists gives me affirmation. I'm in great company with aspiring writers.

    Really, do celebrate, girl! You deserve it!

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  4. Congratulations on making it to the semi-finals! I loved your description of your phone-call, and I could make a great mental picture of you hopping in the air on the elementary school sidewalk. :)

    Affirmation...it can come from anywhere. I've received it in a few different forms this last week, but I can't share just yet. Soon though. :)

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  5. Congratulations!! Well-deserved, Sherrinda! And thanks for linking to my blog today. :)

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  6. Wow, congratulations, honey!!! I know this has been years in the making for you.

    A writer friend who's reading my books to pick her fave stories told me I make her laugh when she's least expecting it. That was a cyber high five.

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  7. Congratulations Sherrinda! I formally congratulated you on my blog as well! I squealed seeing so many blogging friends make the semi-finals!

    Your decision to cut back and focus on writing is producing fruit, my friend!

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  8. I've already said this a few times, but it can't hurt to hear it once more: CONGRATS! I'm so excited for you!

    My affirmation came in much the same way, though it was at home in front of hubby and the kids who looked at me like I had three eyes or something. Also, an extra form of affirmation came through a Review Frenzy my large critique group had. A couple of people who had yet to read any of my novel were so excited about it in their reviews. Really brought a smile to my face. :)

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  9. Congratulations, Sherrinda! Yes, I've been affirmed lately. My family has celebrated some recent successes and let me know they believe in me and what I do (writing) and that they are here to support me and my dreams. That makes a huge difference!!
    Thanks for stopping by the MBT Ponderers' blog!

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  10. CJ! I love it when my pet loves on me. It's soooo sweet and a great way to be affirmed.

    Thank you Keli. You are one of those who have been such an encouragement on this journey. I will never forget it!

    Eileen, it is people like YOU who affirm others so well. You are a bright spot in the writing world.

    Erica!!!! Oh come, now! Do tell!!!! I can't wait to find out your secret. :)

    Katie, thank you, ma'am! I loved your post today! EXCELLENT!

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  11. Jeanette, if I could make people laugh, I would feel like I've accomplished something great. What a gift!

    Tamika, thank you, friend. You are sweet to give me a shout out! Your time is coming!!!!

    Ralene, Congratulations to YOU! And to have the call with family around? Well, that is soooo great!

    Beth, how wonderful to have family who support and encourage you in your writing. There is nothing like it!

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  12. CONGRATS again, girly!!!! SO SO excited for you!!!

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  13. Krista! You are the one to be congratulated! Girl!!!! You semi AND Annabelle's heart! What a great weekend you had! God is good.

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  14. Congrats!!!! :) that's so very cool.

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  15. Congratulations, Sherrinda!

    I haven't entered any contests in a very long time, so my affirmations lately have all been the "comments on the blogs" variety, as far as my writing goes. I started a new blog on Wordpress, poemflow, as a NaPoWriMo project, and people I don't know have been reading and commenting. That's always a day brightener.

    In a non-writing area of my life, I received an unexpected affirmation from a sister hoopdancer. I left a comment on a video telling her how much I enjoyed her dance, music and setting choices, and she wrote back that my words meant a lot to her because she really admired my dancing. I had no idea she'd ever seen my videos - talk about an affirmation! I still get teary thinking about it, and it happened almost a month ago. :)

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  16. Hey Sherrinda,
    I'm late stopping by but CONGRATULATIONS. I blogged on Saturday about the same thing. My morning devotion had focused on how we don't need affirmation from other people, that Jesus gives the only approval we need. I promised myself that I would remember that when my phone didn't ring.
    Imagine my surprise when it did ring - but I was standing in front of a class teaching and couldn't answer. I was doing those same mental leaps though. :)

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  17. You must be sooo excited!! I'm so happy for you!! Hope you celebrated with some chocolate!

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  18. Congrats big time, Sherrinda. That is truly awesome. Here's hoping that you ride this wave of success all the way to the end :)

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  19. Good for you, Sherrinda. Success is so sweet when it finally comes. And I would have squealed and jumped too.
    Blessings, Barb

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  20. Thanks Tabitha! You are so sweet!

    Traci, that is so cool about the hoopdancer! I love it when God surprises us like that!

    Yay, Mary!!!! I'm so excited for you!!! May your journey take you far!:)

    Jill, I am thrilled. Still shocked, but I am excited.

    Eric, thank you for the congrats. I really appreciate it.

    B., I think everyone should squeal and jump for joy, don't you?

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  21. Congrats! I love this line "But really, we don't need a contest win to tell us we are on the right track. God is our Affirmation Station." I wrote about my "not finaling" experiences. Sometimes we don't realize how many hurting people are out there (esp now) and how they're missing their affirmations!

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