We sit in our cages, whether it’s a large office with a panoramic view or the end of the kitchen table. When we send our short stories or query agents, we’re like the dog wagging his tail, desperate to be noticed. Pick me, pick me, we silently wish as we click send.
And when we get a no, it’s no less hurtful than the person who stops in front of the shelter dog's cage, gazes for a quick moment or two, then walks on by. We hunch our shoulders and put our heads down. Why not me? What’s wrong with me? Of course, we’re really asking why not our story, but let’s be honest. That first sting feels personal. Why not me?
A dog doesn’t think well maybe this needs work or that does, they just know they’re not wanted. Maybe they're too old or too ugly or too pit-bullish. If they are one of the lucky ones and live in no-kill shelter, their chance might come tomorrow or next month or next year, like the patient writer who refuses to give up, knowing that a home will come. Someday.
But many other writers never get that yes. They are the ones who quietly wither away, perhaps folding up the laptop and sighing, thinking it was a nice dream while it lasted. And that dog, the one that nobody wanted, probably thinks the same thing at the end of the short walk into the last room he or she will ever see.
This video is way too cute not to share. Patrick gets his first dog bone!
Save a life, adopt a shelter pet.