Friday, January 28, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness

I’m a firm believer in paying it forward, random acts of kindness and do unto others… Yeah, I know it all seems a bit hooky and clichéd, but something tells me that even the most pessimistic person would change their mind when they are on the receiving end of an act of kindness.

I find that when I’m down, having a pity party or just having a funky day, someone always does something, or says something that makes me feel better. Maybe I’m just hyper aware of what people do and say because I’m a writer and I pay attention to things like that. Most times the person isn’t even aware that I’m in a bad mood. I’m not whiny or a person who dwells in sadness, so when I’m having an off day, I’m usually trying to dig myself out. It’s not always possible. Sometimes I’m just going to be in a funk for a day or so. This is why it’s so important what you say and how you interact with people. It has an impact that can reach far more than you know.

Well, the other day, I’d just gotten a rejection on a full and was having a major case of the “When’s it going to be my turn?” Complete with sniffles and pouty bottom lip. I hadn’t told anyone about the request nor had I told anyone about the rejection so I was literally having a private pity party. Then, I got this email:

Hi Karen,
I just wanted to send you a little note of thanks for the comment you left on my blog yesterday. I'm glad you enjoyed my story . . . but more than that, I'm glad you're writing. :)
Who knew it was so hard, right?!
Not that it matters, coming from someone you don't even know, but from one writer to another, keep at it, alright? All of it--the writing, the resolutions--all of it.
Hey, You just may be closer than you think!

Yes, Beth, it does matter even if it’s coming from a woman I don’t know. I’d just left a comment on her blog because I was moved by her story of The Call. My blues were completely wiped away when I read this. My situation hadn’t changed. I’d still been rejected by an awesome agent, but how I reacted to the rejection was completely changed.

The entire email made me smile, but it was the last line that really had me feeling better. This author will probably never know that her email came at such a perfect time, and isn’t that really how it works?

I just wanted to share this with you all because it was such a pleasant surprise. Do any of you have a random act of kindness someone showed to you? I’d love to hear it.


Tere Kirkland said...

I'm constantly surprised by the goodwill bloggers in our ever-expanding sphere show one another. Great post!

Monica B.W. said...

Oh, your story really moved me. And I'm glad you're feeling better. Because I know how sucky those days can be. I've had soooo many!

Tabitha Bird said...

yes, those words can mean so much to us hey.

I just wanted to tell you that last week I too received a rejection on a full MS that was out with an agent. And I cried and ranted and raved and got very very down about it. I just wanted to encourage you that you are not alone and to keep trying with your book. The wanting can really hurt sometimes but it is preferable to living a life without wanting anything. Go for it girl!!!!

Karen Denise said...

Tere, the kindness of strangers can sometimes be more meaningful than the kindness of loved ones. It's somewhat expected that people we love will be kind to us. This is why I try to be careful with how I interact with people both known and unknown.

Thank you, Monica. Only we writers are such a rare and odd breed. When I am down about a rejection, most times people around me just can't understand why I'm so bummed. All I have to say to a writer is: I got an R on a full and everyone knows my pain. It's a wonderful community and I love being a part of it.

Tabitha, thanks for your support. You are so right about the wanting really hurting sometimes. You feel like you are right on the edge and your fingers can almost reach, but it's still just an inch away. I'm working and will continue to work to close that gap between where I am now and where I want to be. Thanks again!