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  • Jennifer Z. Major

Fiesta de lástima, mesa para uno.

Badly translated, the title means "pity party, table for one".

Ya know, my friends, keeping up the "fight" part of the fight can get hard. Discouragement can come from the most readily accessible places, and from places that you didn't know existed.

While worry isn't a big issue for me, frustration is getting easier to find, and harder to fight off.

But before anyone starts to preach at me, and I mean AT, as opposed to TO, pull up a cup of something hot, or cold, and listen...

Yes, Frustration is an angry, hungry beast who happily feeds on a writer's hopes and dreams. Actually, those are Frustration's main fuel sources, but I am reminded, DAILY, that God has this. Whatever "this" is.

I am soldiering on, even though I am fizzling out. Probably because I'm leaning too much on my own steam.

My drive to write for and about the Navajo people is still well and whole, but, well, there are holes. Holes kicked in by delays, detours, and if I'm honest, discouragement. I have a solid core of endorsers (people who will vouch for my writing) and yet despite the hard work of both of my agents, the Navajo historical fiction sits on the virtual shelf, collecting pretend dust. But that era and its people was, is, and always will be what drives me to tell a story.

In the summer of 2016, I followed the advice of 2 highly respected friends and took a stab at contemporary romantic comedy, heavy on the snark. I'll confess, it's emotionally and psychologically easier to write than the trauma and heartache of the Navajo world, 150+ years ago. I'm working on my 3rd rom/com, and we'll see how that goes. Also, jumping out of one's box is a good way to sharpen one's writing skills.

And yes, encouragement often jumps out from behind a door and makes a person step back in surprise. Over the weekend, lots of it came at me from several sources that I didn't expect. It's not so much that it came, it's that it came when my hands were really starting to hurt from banging on the gates of heaven.

So, what have I learned? That surrender is a process, and obedience is indeed a long road. One foot in front of the other, one hand to the plow, and let's be honest, the other one in the box of chocolates.

So, as tough as things have gotten, and as rough as 2017 got at certain points, I'll aim to be ready, and I'll keep my eyes and offerings fixed onward, forward, and skyward.

So, hello there, 2018. Make yourself at home. But could you please hand me that box of sea salt milk chocolate caramels? Thanks.

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