Great news! My short story, “What Do You Really Want?” appears in this week’s Binah BeTween, the tween supplement of Binah Magazine! It’s available at Jewish bookstores and newstands nationwide. This is my first appearance in that magazine, making it especially exciting for me.
It’s also the story I’ve written on the shortest deadline (other than an academic paper). It proved quite harrowing, because the six days I was given included both Shabbat and the time difference between L.A. and Israel. However, baruch HaShem (thanks to the Source, G-d), the delay ended up working in my favor. Because I started work before the editor got back to me about what genre she preferred (it was Shabbat in Israel, but not here)…the resulting fantasy story was not what she planned, and at first I panicked. Thank G-d, the editor ended up thinking my unexpected approach worked out beautifully and accepted it after all. I hope all of you like it, too.
This leads me to contemplate how much I owe to Heavenly Assistance. When I was offered that piece on a short deadline, I had no idea where I wanted the story to go until an idea “just popped” into my head. Likewise, I was offered another job more recently. The deadline was much farther off, but I still needed to get an idea and get cracking. G-d aligned all sorts of experiences and conversations on the very theme that the editor had selected. Other times, I’ve awakened at 5 o’clock in the morning with the perfect solution to my stalled Work In Progress.
A rabbi once explained to me that the reason people like Dovid HaMelech (King David) were able to accomplish so much was because they knew their own limits and that their ultimate success depended entirely on G-d. They trusted in His assistance and the endowments He gave them (acknowledging the Source of those endowments) to accomplish things most people would give up on. I’m not on that level, but there are times when I look back and go, “How did I do that!” and know I didn’t do it on my own.
Does anyone else out there feel like G-d gives them the final push to get them to their goals?
3 thoughts on “Good news and a helping Hand”
I like this idea of believing that it is something greater (I tend to go with Joss Whedon’s “the powers that be”–while i’m not a polytheist, I do feel compelled to acknowledge, separately, elements like “inspiration” and “coincidence”). I’m conflicted, though. I can’t fully attribute it to that because I feel like the external construct of a tight deadline sometimes leads to more immediate creativity. My related personal experience scale ranges from being onstage in an improv skit (tightest fathomable deadline) to having this unspecific idea that I’d like to write a book at some point in my life.
I think it’s critical to acknowledge the importance of something external in order to maintain a consistent level of productivity (and avoid writer’s block). It’s relieves some of the onus. And, perhaps it is your faith that helped you see that those conversations and experiences were exactly what you needed. The person who lacks that faith might have been so focused on “I don’t have an idea! What will I do?” that he or she might have missed those cues.