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Things change, keep up your faith!

For most people, graduation is an exciting day – the culmination of years of hard work. My graduation day… was not.

I remember that weekend two years ago. Family and friends had flown in from across the country to watch our class walk across that stage. But like everyone else in my graduating class, I had watched the economy turn from bad to worse my senior year. We graduates had degrees, but very limited prospects. Numerous applications had not panned out and I knew that the next day, when my lease ended, I would no longer have a place to call home.

The weeks ahead weren’t easy. I gathered up everything I couldn’t carry and put it into storage. Then, because I knew my small university town couldn’t offer me any opportunities, I packed up my car and drove to Southern California to find work. But what I thought would take a week dragged into two, and then four, and 100 job applications later, I found myself in the exact same spot as I was before. And the due date to begin paying back my student loans was creeping ever closer.

You know that feeling when you wake up and you are just consumed with dread? Dread about something you can’t control – that sense of impending failure that lingers over you as you hope that everything that happened to you thus far was just a bad dream? That feeling became a constant in my life.

Days felt like weeks, weeks like months, and those many months felt like an unending eternity of destitution. And the most frustrating part was no matter how much I tried, I just couldn’t seem to make any progress.

So what did I do to maintain my sanity? I wrote. Something about putting words on a page made everything seem a little clearer – a little brighter. Something about writing gave me hope. And if you want something badly enough… sometimes a little hope is all you need!

I channeled my frustration into a children’s book. Beyond the River was the story of an unlikely hero featuring a little fish who simply refused to give up on his dream.

And then one day, without any sort of writing degree or contacts in the writing world – just a lot of hard work and perseverance – I was offered a publishing contract for my first book! After that, things slowly began to fall into place. I was offered a second book deal. Then, a few months later, I got an interview with The Walt Disney Company and was hired shortly after.

The moral of this story is… don’t give up. Even if things look bleak now, don’t give up. Two years ago I was huddled in my car drinking cold soup right out of the can. Things change.

Beyond the River

If you work hard, give it time, and don’t give up, things will always get better. Oftentimes our dreams lie in wait just a little further upstream… all we need is the courage to push beyond the river.

Alex W. Miller
Alex’s first book is available through Amazon
Link to book on Amazon: Beyond the River
Publication Date: February 28, 2011

{ 20 comments… add one }
  • Bharathwaj November 22, 2014, 3:50 am

    That was a great advice. Tnk u so much.

  • Jaydip malaviya September 25, 2014, 1:09 am

    Thanx a Lots… for Sharing the Wonderful Story bz i know that i’m Strugling than story teach me how to solve this problem

  • Bethi July 9, 2014, 3:39 pm

    Thank you very much ؛ even if i’m 18 i’m facing a lot of difficulty i’m strugling 🙂

  • Paul January 17, 2014, 4:08 pm

    This story describes me and I’m at a point in life where I need motivation daily coz I almost gave up on my dream. Thnx, I will persevere coz u also did.

  • Ekta June 24, 2013, 7:12 pm

    Thanks for sharing the wonderful story!!

  • Anusha May 2, 2013, 12:37 pm

    It gave me a new hope and encouragement. Thanks for sharing it!!

  • Akanksha April 4, 2013, 7:05 am


  • David Nelson January 8, 2013, 1:09 am

    Hi Alex, your story is very inspiring, and I would love to cite it in my upcoming book. Which will be published in few months from now.

  • Saurabh December 28, 2012, 9:55 pm

    Effort must be 100% devoted, it works

  • Maheen December 21, 2012, 3:23 pm

    This is something a lot of students can relate to and learn from. Thanks!

  • Dhivya December 18, 2012, 3:11 am

    Really amazing. After reading this story I feel some motivation in myself. Hard work never fails. It really works. Thanks.

  • Kavita December 16, 2012, 1:24 am

    Read this story to my husband…n it made him feel better.


  • Yumi December 7, 2012, 6:15 am

    I’m graduating this year and I’m very worried of what lies ahead mostly cause I still don’t have plans for my future. I’m glad I read this, now I will just try my best to find what I want to do. Thank you. ^^

  • Nelson December 5, 2012, 2:07 am

    Ang galing. I like this story..

  • Anonymous December 4, 2012, 9:19 pm

    Thank you. You just light up my hope again…….!

  • Pawan Pratap December 4, 2012, 1:39 pm

    A hope….that is all we need….!!

  • Mosopefoluwa December 4, 2012, 2:27 am

    Great for me. Keep the dreams alive.

  • Vishwa December 4, 2012, 12:02 am

    Thank you so much! Very motivating especially when things don’t work as per our plans! Right time for me to read this!

  • Elizabeth December 3, 2012, 10:49 am

    Thank You for sharing this wonderful story. I am at an extremely rough bump at the moment and taking day by day with my three beautiful girls. God Bless

  • Esther December 3, 2012, 9:42 am

    Wow!!! Thanks for you have helped someone here.

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