Fate but not destiny

I was revising a manuscript today and using thesaurus.com, trying to come up with the correct way I wanted to describe this feeling my heroine was having. Then I realized why I couldn’t put my finger on it. The idea I was trying to capture was yuán fèn. The fate of bringing two people together. It’s not love at first sight. It’s not attraction. There’s no word for it in English.

There’s another saying about yuán fèn that translates roughly into: “Fate without destiny”. That’s when two people are brought together, but it’s just not in the cards that they stay together. The English saying of “Not meant to be” just doesn’t capture the bittersweet sadness of “Fate without destiny”.

So to turn my thinking back on its tail, which I like to do —
Lately I’ve been getting better responses to my queries, which is a little spot of happiness. This week has been a roller coaster. Started the week with some awesome requests to be followed up with a couple disappointing rejections. It’s all part of this cycle and I’m thinking that these agents and I, so far we have fate but not destiny. My query and opening pages are getting my toe in the door and that’s a big start. I’m just not closing the deal and I need to work on that.

There are still nibbles out there. I have to get those requests from earlier in the week out and hopefully this time, destiny awaits. Enough spiritual philosophizing – back to work. Destiny wants the lazy description in this paragraph polished up.

No Comments

  1. Dara
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 13:22:49

    You’ll find that destined agent soon.

    Fate without destiny–definitely something that describes the characters in my two other book ideas. I never thought of it that way but it sounds so much more powerful than “Not meant to be.”

  2. jeannielin
    Feb 27, 2009 @ 22:33:50

    Thanks for the nice note, Dara. I visited your blog and hung around for a bit. I hope your writing journey is going well!

    Thanks for linking me.