one true sentence


I have been struggling with my job as a writer.

It’s not that I don’t want to write or that I don’t have a truth to write, but the words have been slow to come. And when they finally find their way from my brain through my finger tips, they just aren’t right.

It’s like typing in a bowl of jello.

To be honest, I have been struggling with that word “truth” that Hem talks about.

What is my truth? How do I go about writing truth?

I feel like when there is hurt or pain or disappointment my truth flows from me in a wild sea of words, almost like it’s running to get out of my head and heart. When I am crushed, the only way back I know is through my words.

But what about when I am experiencing joy and success? Is that not worth my words too? Why is it harder to write about my accomplishments and being satisfied? Why does it feel less “true”?

I have often been accused of being a pessimist–of always saying “yes, but” and “but what if”.

I have got some wonderful news about my writing as of late. Three of the five places I have submitted to this year so far have accepted my writing. One is already available. One is set to print (in the Language Arts Journal of Michigan), and one was just accepted (so I can’t give you more details). I have one more out there. And one rejection.

The one I have written about is the rejection.

Is sadness more true that happiness?

Hemingway also said, “All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know.”

So that is what I will do. Each day.

Today my truth is this:

I am proud of myself.

I feel strong mentally and emotionally, but I need to take better care of myself physically.

I feel like I have earned the break that is summer.

What is your one true sentence?


About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.


  1. I think it’s easier to write about the bad stuff because when we feel down we yearn for connection … for someone to acknowledge and understand our struggles. I know that when I write from a place of doubt, shame, or fear, there’s an urgency to my words that isn’t there when things are going well. You are not alone in this.

    Oh, and my one true sentence for today: I am me, and that is enough.

  2. I really needed to read this today. About an hour ago, I just received the second of two rejections since Monday (maybe you received an acceptance from one of them!?). Today’s rejection was a subject/piece that was so gut wrenching to write, much less continue to live through now. And this was about 15 minutes after taking a long, hard look at my (pathetic) blog stats and wondering why the hell I’m doing all of this to begin with and maybe it’s just time to let it go. It doesn’t seem to matter that last week, another piece of mine was accepted at a very large publication and will run soon. Why IS the sad/hard stuff so much easier to confront in writing, and why IS it that I, like you, also cannot seem to enjoy the accomplishments, though rare are still pretty darn big? Anyway, I clicked through to your LTYM post embedded here, and THAT one is the one that I really needed to read, it turns out. So, thank you. It’s nice to feel not so alone about some things, particularly as a writer and especially about the rejection (both express and implied). But most importantly: congratulations on all of your hard earned rewards–it’s easy to see here why your writing is being picked up! Can’t wait to read! 🙂

    My one true sentence for today: Tomorrow will offer another chance.

  3. I’m proud of you too. Keep telling the truth about the good things. You are kicking ass.

  4. Good job! So proud of you!!!!! After being a working mom for the first time and finishing grad school at the same time I will spend all summer with my cutie pie and not feel guilty for not doing more work over the summer.

  5. Being rejected is hard. It sucks, sometimes. And other times is pushes us to kick some butt.

    My truth today is that I am tired but exhilarated. I am going places.

  6. You have so much to be proud of, and I know you know that, but I’ll tell you anyway. You have a lot to be proud of, and you’re a damn good writer.

    My truth today: I am imperfect and fabulous.

  7. I don’t know what my truth is. But yours? You *are* amazing. And you should be proud. You’ve done great work!

  8. Typing into a bowl of jello. Yep.

    I “get” all of this. I think that means I must be brilliant since you are.:)

    And my sentence today? You can do this.

    Thanks Katie.

  9. My Truth: I’m doing the best I can.

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