For eight years the struggling young writer wrote incredible numbers of short stories and articles for publication and for eight long years they were rejected. Fortunately, he didn’t give up and for that he – and America – will always be grateful.
He spent much of his time in the Navy writing a mountain of routine reports and letters. He learned how to say things eloquently and yet concisely. After his hitch in the Navy he tried desperately hard to make it as a writer, but despite those eight years and hundreds of stories and articles, he was unable to sell even one.
On one occasion, however, an editor wrote an encouraging note on the rejection slip. It simply said, “Nice try.” I think you’ll agree that most of us would not rate that very high on the encouragement list, but it literally brought tears to the young writer’s eyes and he was given new hope and continued to persist. He simply would not give up.
Finally, after many years of effort he wrote a book that has deeply affected the entire world and helped him to become one of the most influential writers of the ’70s. I’m speaking of Alex Hailey and his book, Roots, which was made into one of the most-watched television mini-series of all time.
The message is clear: If you have a dream and if you really believe you have some ability that can be expressed, pursue that dream; don’t give up. Hang in there! Who knows, maybe on your next effort somebody will say, “Nice try.” That might be all the encouragement you’ll need. Remember, success might be just around the corner, over the next hill, or at the end of that next effort. Think about it, give it a try and I’ll SEE YOU AT TOP!