The Coach once told me that early in his career when things were looking grim--he had a losing record at Granite High and there were more than a few lean years at BYU--he made up his mind that he wouldn't become one of the Bitter Ones. He'd chosen a dicey line of work--one where things may or may not pan out. And in fact, chances were good that they WOULDN'T. Still. He chose it. He decided to give it his all and then be good with whatever happened.
As it turned out, he had a singular career. Very few people in any field get to experience some of what he did, which is why you can't really try to model your career after his. He was good at what he did, and he was lucky, and both things contributed to his success.
However, I'm pretty sure that if things had gone south, he would have stuck to his resolution. I think he would have been very disappointed, of course. Underneath all that stony calm he is a fiery competitor. But I think he would have eventually shrugged his shoulders, expressed gratitude for the opportunity to try his hand at something he loved, and walked away.
I've been thinking about this a lot lately, because wow. It is very, very easy to get discouraged in this business. And when you're discouraged, it's easy to go to the Bitter Place. I know whereof I speak, People. So today I am re-newing my vows to stay grateful, to stay positive, and to stay busy writing.
Damn, I'm inspirational!