September 26, 2017
As a writer, one of my biggest fears is rejection.
It is human nature to hold in our hearts a longing for acceptance.
This inner drive to be seen and heard is in some ways at odds with the nature of publishing.
Here, in my free space to write I can enjoy the leisure of posting,
Publishing progress in press as I please, without a peer reviewing
My work to condemn me for the mistakes I’ve made
The lack of clarity and rigor, the seemingly lack of evidence to
Confirm the claimed results and implications.
This is, and is not, at the same time, a laughing matter.
A wise person one told me,
To take your work seriously is one thing, to take yourself seriously is another.
For me, I choose to take my work seriously, remaining light hearted about myself.
Today it’s taken me all morning to face this fear of rejection.
Finally, now at the keyboard.
Starting with my most difficult project first.
I lean in to face the fear.
As the line goes, “it’s not personal, it’s business.”
The business of publishing involves peer-review.
Peer review may lend itself to an unfavorable decision (for you).
Perhaps to protect the integrity of the enterprise.
A journal cannot maintain an inverse relation of acceptance rate to prestige
If much of what is submitted is ultimately accepted.
But here’s the trick.
If you persist.
If you dedicate your work toward this aim.
If you repeatedly face the fear of rejection.
There is a silver lining.
You learn in the process.
You become a better writer through critical feedback on your work.
You hone your craft of telling the story, bird by bird (cf. Anne Lamott).
As a word builder.
Construct sentences that flow into paragraphs.
Paragraphs that narrate a story.
A simple story. Told to an audience.
With a simple aim. To educate.
For experienced writers,
this process may look different.
For emerging scholars (like me),
this process is the same time and time again.
I am dedicated to advancing my many manuscripts that are in progress.
For these are threads of my research agenda that are ultimately connected to my passions as an educator.
To improve opportunities for learners and teachers and researchers of mathematics education.
#keepitsimple #progressinpress #justkeepswimming #write