Creative life and frustration


“Learning to endure disappointment and frustration is part of the job of a creative person.”

That gold nugget of a statement comes from Elizabeth Gilbert in her new book “Big Magic” (great book by the way!), and I’d like to ponder the meaning with you.

As a writer (and author), I agree wholeheartedly in the authenticity of that above opening statement. None of us writers (or other creative types) can or will escape disappointments and frustrations of our “job”, but we can (and must) learn to endure them in a way that keeps our head above water.

Now, there are the obvious disappointments of the dreaded (and often too numerous to mention) rejection letters after we’ve submitted the work of our blood, sweat and tears to someone who didn’t love it the way we did (how is that even possible?). But there is also the daily disappointments and frustrations that can knock the wind out of our sails or steer us into a fog so thick we’re sure we’ll never get out of it. Whatever the cause, we must not let disappointment and frustration kill our creative desires or blind us to our path.

Living with disappointment isn’t the same as giving into it. Living with or enduring both disappointment and frustration means recognizing it, feeling it then putting it out with the garbage. And leave it out there. Don’t try to bring it in like a stray cat, because if you feed it, it will stay. And if disappointment and frustration stay, they will derail your creative life and goals in no time flat.

Up until recently, I used to think there was something horribly wrong with me, that I must be some special kind of stupid because after each disappointment and through every frustration I continue to get right back to my writing (sometimes after a couple days of feeling sorry for myself, but still…). I get the air knocked out of me, but eventually I begin to breathe as if my life depended upon it. And I think it does. I believe if I don’t follow my creative calling, I will stop breathing.

But this all pertains to more than creative people living creative careers, doesn’t it? It’s relevant to every person in every walk of life, every career and calling.

Life will always be sprinkled with frustrations of varying types and disappoints in all shapes and sizes, but we keep living. And if we want to keep living in a way that brings us happiness instead of simply filling our lungs with air, we’ll need to hold our head up high and power through those frustrations and disappointments.

I encourage everyone, but I’m especially speaking to fellow writers (and creative types) when I say hold on tight to what you love, and please don’t deprive the world of your gift by letting fears, insecurities, frustrations or disappoints knock you off course for long.


About ljwrite2014

Linda Juliano is an author of epic proportions. Okay, not epic, but of proportions in any case. Her debut novel is "Cadence Beach", a romantic-suspense. As she writes her second novel, a romantic women's fiction, she is simultaneously writing short stories and flash fiction (even shorter stories) for publication. Her first published flash fiction piece, "Over The Line", can be found in the October, 2017 issue of, an online literary magazine. You can also find The Blue Hat at Adelaide on-line literary magazine (March 2018) and Caged in Across The Margin e-zine (May 2018 issue). Stay tuned for future publications! When she isn't buried inside a book, or bent over a keyboard typing away furiously, she's probably watching a movie. From action films to syfy to Hallmark Christmas movies, she loves it all! She's also a huge fan of all things chocolate and, thank goodness, exercising. She loves the outdoors, but she's no stranger to the gym. Her reading choices are an eclectic mix, but at the core, she gleans the most from stories about human triumph after overcoming any kind of strong obstacle weather it be physical, mental or of the heart (WW2 stories are a favorite period). It's best if there is a happy ending, however. She's a huge fan of happy endings! As an author/writer, Linda's motto is to entertain the reader's mind while tugging at their heart. She hopes to accomplish that with every story, long or short. You can follow Linda and the trajectory of her writing career on this blog, her Facebook author page, LinkedIn or Goodreads. "The most fearless hearts, the audacious dreamers, have always maintained a sense of optimism that often flies in the face of the available evidence."-- Martin O'Malley "For myself, I am an optimist--it does not seem to be much use being anything else." --Winston Churchill

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