Singing and Dancing in the Rain

Outtakes 258

Singing and Dancing in the Rain

by Cait Collins

 

The Texas Panhandle is flat as far as the eye can see, but about 25 or 30 miles south of Amarillo, the grassy Plains drop off into Palo Duro Canyon. It’s amazing the abrupt change in the landscape.

Palo Duro Canyon is the second largest canyon system in the United States, second only to the Grand Canyon. Much of the canyon is privately owned and not open to the public. But Palo Duro Canyon State Park is operated by the State of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. It’s a beautiful place to camp, hike, and enjoy nature. It is also the home of the Pioneer Amphitheatre and the musical drama T*E*X*A*S.

I don’t go every year, but I do attend a performance every few years. Last Friday evening, my nephew, his three kids, and I braved threatening weather to see the play. We were about half way to the canyon when rain drops began splashing against the windshield. The shower was brief, so we had hopes everything would be great. No such luck. It misted, sprinkled, or rained from the middle of the first act to the end of the show. We were wet and chilled, but the show was still stunning. The thunder and lightning only added to the spectacle.

I am always impressed with the talent and professionalism of the cast and crew. No matter the weather or the adversities, these gifted men, women, and children adhere to the old adage, “The show must go on”. They were as wet and cold as the members of the audience, but they smiled and thanked the theater-goers for attending.

My question is how do we as writers maintain our professionalism when faced with rejection, criticism, and lack of support? Do we write nasty blogs about the agent or editor who rejected a query? Do we toss the manuscript into the trash? Or refuse to work on another piece for months because no one understands our artistic musings?

I won’t say writing is easy or always fun, but if we choose to be writers, then shouldn’t we also choose to be professional? Do we want an agent to remember that we accepted his rejection graciously? Of course we do. But if we storm off we will be remembered but not in a positive way.

I choose to be a writer; therefore, I must also choose to act in a manner that makes a positive impression on those I meet. The bottom line is attitude and actions can make or break a career.

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