Disappointed Writer? Meet the Robinsons

by | May 27, 2010 | Fiction Book Reviews | 10 comments

I don’t know if any of you have seen the animated movie Meet the Robinsons, but if you haven’t – I recommend it. If only for one scene.

 As aspiring authors – and even some of you who are published authors- we are well acquainted with feelings of failure…or the polite ‘Thank you, but no thank you” notes from editors or agents.

 Sometimes, the letters keep piling up, to the point where you feel discouraged. Believe me, it’s been one of those months for me. LOTS of “No thank yous”. My rejections are on the rise, almost to the impressive point. Not impressive yet, though J

 Well, Meet the Robinsons has a good message for us. In brief summary, it’s a movie about a brilliant orphan who sees himself as a failure, until a trip to the future helps teach him about the gift of family and stick-to-itness.

 The overarching theme? Keep Moving Forward.

In short, life is full of failures. Trials and errors. It’s HOW you look at those failures that makes or breaks you reaching your goal.

 During one scene, the orphan, Lewis, is shown all the different attempts one inventor took to make an invention work. All the failures  before the masterpiece. The numbers escalate.






 And then…


A working product.

A published book?

 Ever feel like you’re closer to the 952 than the 27? Post Rejection Disorder?

Totally understand.

I’ve been fighting that gloomy fog all week and finally began to realize a few things today.

  1. It’s part of this gig I call writing
  2. I learn from those critiques and failures.
  3. At least I tried. You cannot fail without trying – and that takes courage
  4. I can’t stop writing. So…I need to learn from my critiques
  5. God’s called me. He’ll Equip me.
  6. I haven’t made it to 952 yet. I MUST have more work to do 😉

 You know what? If you leave those ‘nasty’ critiques alone for about a week or two, THEN go back and read them, they’re usually not as bad as you first imagined. My eyes are immediately attracted to all the BAD, but in hindsight, there was a lot of good sprinkled in through the other comments. Things I need to learn.

And those rejection slips? One more proof that you’re TRYING!

Like Lewis learns in Meet the Robinsons – those failures teach us something. They teach us perseverance – a REQUIREMENT for a writer…and a Christian.

 We shouldn’t give up. Giving up leads us to despair, but perseverance pushes us toward hope.

 Romans 3:2-4 states:

“And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

 So, with perseverance and determination in mind – here are a few quotes by two famous men who knew the meaning of perseverance:

 Thomas Edison and Abraham Lincoln

 Thomas Edison

 “To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.”

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work”

 “I haven’t failed. I’ve found 10,000 ways that don’t work.”

The three great essentials to achieve anything worth while are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense

“Nearly every man who develops an idea works it up to the point where it looks impossible, and then he gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged.”

 Abraham Lincoln

 Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.

Common looking people are the best in the world: that is the reason the Lord makes so many of them. (Okay, I just like this one)

 Don’t worry when you are not recognized, but strive to be worthy of recognition.


  1. Keli Gwyn

    Pepper, I’m so sorry to hear about all the passes. That has got to be mighty discouraging. I admire your ability to put a good spin on things despite the temporary setbacks. You will make it, and I’ll be ready to join in your happy dance when you do.

    • pepperbasham

      Thanks for the encouragement. It’s been a good lesson, though – you know? God HAS a plan, that’s what makes life so much easier for Christians. We are LOVED and ‘all things work together for the good of them who love Him and are called according to His purpose.”
      That’s REAL encouragement, isn’t it? 🙂

  2. Casey

    I knew as soon as I saw this post on my feed what you were going to talk about. KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!! Very true. 🙂

    Keep goin’ Pepper, I have EVERY confidance that you will be published someday. I have read your stuff and it is great!! (and I don’t say that just because I know you either) It really is and you just haven’t hit the “write” moment for the market you. BUT YOU WILL!!!

    Love the quote by Edison, I had heard it before, but certainly bears repeating.

    Great post. 🙂

    • pepperbasham

      Case (I can’t help it, I’ve got to call you that 🙂

      You. Are. A. SWEETIE!!!

      Thanks for the encouragement. IT’s always nice to have a friend who is also a fan. That’s almost as cool as having a kid who is also a fan 🙂

  3. Casey

    Oh look at Keli and I thought I was going to be first. 😛

    *waving at Keli!*

  4. flyingmulestudio

    Criticism and rejection is so hard not to take personally, especially for writer’s and artist’s, as you put a little bit of yourself in each piece. My Art teacher, probably the greatest teacher I ever had, made us put our pieces out at the end of each week for a critique. We each HAD to constructively criticize each other’s work…very hard. But it taught me how to give and take it gracefully, as painful as it can be. Like you said, keep moving forward, it’s in God’s perfect timing.

    • pepper

      ooh SHaron,
      I didn’t think about artists too. So right.
      Constructive criticism is a good teacher, even if it doesn’t tickle our ears.

      If you guys haven’t visited Sharon’s website, you should. Her art has a wonderfully whimsical quality to it. I want to have her illustrate my children’s books, if she will 🙂 She’s fabulous.


  5. Sherrinda

    Oh this is soooo good! I loved that movie, by the way, and I thought this post spoke to writers EVERYWHERE. We all need encouragement, as well as the stamina to keep on going when the going gets tough.

    • pepper

      Right Sherrinda. We all need encouragement – on some days more than others 🙂
      It’s nice to have those encouragers in your life – like all of you who have commented. Wow. Feeling better already

  6. Case

    Oh I don’t mind. You and Julie L. are the only ones that do, so it’s kind of fun. 🙂

    ~Case 😀


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