We are still wiggling around in the New Year trying to get used to the fit of 2015. Just a month ago where were wearing 2014 like a pair of old shoes that some were ready to toss in the trash and others wanted to hang on to. Is it going to be a good year or a bad one? Maybe in between?
It is the great unknown that stretches before us. To put structure and order to this scary bit of new time many make resolutions. I will lose weight, I will write that book, I will stress less… the hopes and plans for the coming days stretch on and on.
That is not to say having a resolution is a bad thing. It is always good to have a plan. But a plan with no planning is just a wish. There is a difference between I will and I wish. Now is the time to take steps to make sure those resolutions happen, rather than just kind of hope things will come to pass.
Make sure you have asked yourself how you plan to accomplish your resolution and not just what you wish to do.
I have a confession to make. I didn’t write very much in December. In fact, I had a great internal battle about whether I should give it up entirely.
Anyone who is a writer knows, you can’t just stop writing. It is something that comes out if you want it to or not. (And more likely when you don’t want it to, rather than when you do.) I pondered for a while but I didn’t talk about it. First, I was afraid my friend would think that I was looking for sympathy or pats on the head. Second, I was afraid my friends might deliver swift hard smacks to the back of my head. (Or even scarier, what if they agreed that I should give up my silly writing dreams?)
Eventually, the simple fact that I was afraid I would be told to give it up, finally sifted through my self doubt to make me realize I didn’t want to. Because if I did, wouldn’t I be feeling relief rather than dread?
I am still wrestling with that dragon of self doubt. It keeps asking me questions that I don’t have the answers to. Am I good enough? Does anyone want to even read what I write? Why would someone chose one of my stories over all the many others out there? What if I finally get my stuff where people can see it and they scoff and toss it aside before giving it a chance; because I over looked something simple, like a spelling or grammar error? (That last one really scares me. I have friends that do that so I know it isn’t just paranoia.)
Writing is a very solitary thing. You spend a lot of time in your own head. This means you face the good and bad about yourself all the time. You struggle with it. When you can, you pen it down on a page. (Pun intended.)
I am not writing this to seek sympathy. I am writing to…well, write it out. Things look much clearer on a page than they do all jumbled up in your head. I am not giving up even though I still feel a bit downhearted at the moment. I am told that many writers go through the “Am I good enough?” struggle. Big names with many book contracts under their belts still doubt themselves sometimes. It’s a hazard of the occupation.
The important thing, the thing I have to remind myself, is to just keep putting one word in front of another. If I can do that then I’m bound to get somewhere eventually.
Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a blessed rest of the year. May the New Year bring happy times and limited tears. And may what few tears do fall, serve to enhance the every day joys as they happen.