Persistence Is Key (As Shown by a Balloon)

It’s funny how life sends you a sign. Or, in this case, a balloon.

Persistence is key, writers are told. When writing. When editing. Especially when querying. And all writers know that it’s easy to lose faith. In your ability. In your work. In your tenacity and will to succeed in this fickle (and slow) world of publishing.
I was pondering my own trials and tribulations on the weekend, as I leant on my decking balustrade and watched the sun travel toward the horizon. And that’s when the balloon floated into view. From where it came, I do not know.

It was a vibrant orange, full of life, hope, as it danced toward my backyard. It entered on a slight gust, like a finger prod from an invisible giant, and flew straight into my ash tree. As it weaved its way through an obstacle course of branches, I waited for the “pop” that would announce its defeat.

Yet it did not come. Instead, the balloon escaped its woody snare and drifted across my veggie patch to be grabbed by a gum on the far side.

This is it, I thought, its end is near.

But the balloon, its orange burnt bright by the approaching sunset, wriggled its way between the gum’s limbs. And those of the pine behind it.

Until the balloon was free to continue its journey.

As it disappeared over the crest of the hill, I couldn’t help but see similarities between this orange circle of stubbornness and a writer’s life: the struggles to succeed after setback (after setback), and to continue on your path in spite of those who tell you, “No”, those who question why you do what you do, and those who have given up themselves.

Persistence is key.


Have you seen or heard anything that has served as a metaphor for, or become symbolic to, your thoughts or feelings?


5 thoughts on “Persistence Is Key (As Shown by a Balloon)

  1. Funny, I was just reading a post at Writers In The Storm about persistence. It had a smaller scope (the persistence needed in order to finish a manuscript), and the writer used a personal metaphor of long-distance swimming. But the overall sentiment’s the same. We need to be persistent if we’re going to finish a draft – and we’re also going to need it if we want to continue our writing career in the long term.

    I can’t think of my own metaphor to use for writing and perseverance right now… only because it’s Monday morning where I am. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Finishing a first draft is a feat in itself, one which many who wish to write a novel never actually achieve.

    In terms of a writing career, I read somewhere that if you’re not getting rejected, you’re not trying hard enough to be published. I like that one 🙂


  3. Pingback: Charlotte Wood – on Luck, Longevity and Tribes – Rebecca Chaney

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s