Door #2.

“Sometimes goodbye is a second chance
Here is my chance
This is my chance…”
~Shinedown, “Second Chance”

“When one door closes, another one opens.”

How many times have you heard that quote before? How many times have you heard someone mention it? How many times have you applied it to your own life? For me, I think it’s an idea that’s always been in the back of my mind, at least to some extent — the thought that there’s always another opportunity, another chance, another possibility. And, looking back on the past few years, I realize now that I’ve been lucky enough to have that play out for me on more than one occasion. There was the internship in WPVI-TV’s news department – the one that was discontinued the semester before I was to apply in college. There was the newsroom editorial apprentice program at the station (think: that “foot in the door” type job after graduation) – the one that, again, was discontinued in the midst of me applying for it. And then there’s now, my quest to turn my passion for writing into a full-time career and to have With a Little Bit of Luck published.

But that internship? I ended up applying for one in the Creative Services department instead, where I got so much invaluable hands-on experience that I may not have had the chance for otherwise. I learned a great deal, met some truly special people, and had opportunities that I never would have imagined (seriously – I still get a little giddy whenever I think of the promo I wrote being read on-air!). And that apprenticeship? I was crushed when the program was done away with – and subsequently elated less than a month later when I was offered a different job at the station, working on the ABC News Archive project. Again, it was an experience I otherwise never would have had, filled with the chance to meet and work with some truly wonderful people and to learn about things I had never had the opportunity to before. And, best of all, it gave me the chance to take on a second role at the station – working with my mentor in journalism, at her request. I wouldn’t have traded that unbelievable experience for the world … and it came about when one door closed. I will forever be grateful for that, because it’s what allowed me to walk through the door that will always be a special time in my life that I’ll treasure and be so, so thankful to have had.

And this journey to publication? This ultimate dream-come-true? Well, the road may as well be paved with signs and reminders that sometimes, everything really does happen for a reason. I won’t lie, I was crestfallen when I heard back from the agent last Monday and read that she had ultimately decided to pass on my novel. Logically, I knew that was likely – rejection is the name of the game in this industry – but it didn’t make it hurt any less. Like I said in my last entry, though, I made the decision to take her kind words and thoughtful advice and use them as motivation. Just getting that far was a big step in the right direction – maybe not a leap yet, but sometimes the best thing to do is take it one step at a time. Now, talk about a new door opening when one closes … I was absolutely elated when I opened my email Wednesday morning to find a partial manuscript request from a second agent!! How’s that for timing? I’m well aware this second request could go the way of the first, but I’m choosing to be cautiously optimistic and hopeful. Just to have had two requests within a month of starting to send out the letters (I always make sure to have ten out at a time – for every “no” I get back, I submit to another agent) is positively, absolutely, amazingly thrilling for me. Fingers crossed!

I’m learning that sometimes, in some ways, goodbye really is a second chance – and I, for one, plan to continue taking every opportunity I can find to make this dream into a reality. This is my chance. I won’t squander it.

What about you? Have you ever had one door close, just to have another open and give you an experience you’ll never forget? Do you believe that what’s meant to be will always find a way? Do you think everything happens for a reason?


2 thoughts on “Door #2.

  1. When that author spoke for the fiction class i was in last week, he said he liked to roll around in his rejection letters on the floor, he had that many. And i was reading something the other day, and it had that quote about only living once, so do what you want now. I must’ve heard it a million times before, but this time, it really hit me. You can’t sit around, wasting your time just saying “Oh, i wish this would’d be really cool if it did…” you have to get out there and do something. Because this is the only time we’ve got!

    I so admire what you’re doing, Shari. This road you’re on is crazy and hard and intense…and i plan on following your footsteps right down it! :) keep going girl!

    • Okay, that literally made me laugh out loud! Can you imagine doing that with the letters? In a way, though, it’s really comforting to hear stories like that from already published authors. You always read that rejection is a necessity of this business, but hearing personal stories somehow really helps.

      Aww, and thank you so much!! It’s definitely a long, crazy, hard road – but the journey is an amazing one that’s already taught me so much, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’m excited for you to continue along your own quest! :)

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