Sunday, March 25, 2007

Through the forest...

It's been a strange kind of week; feel like I've sat at this desk everyday with very little tangible evidence of ever having been here. It set off a stange kind of reclusive self-deprecation, the kind that every writer goes through I guess. All part of the journey...

As the week closed, the hail stones stopped thrashing the window; the sun shone momentarily and it was somehow easier to step back out into the world. Seems a few people had also been on a similar journey. Perhaps it's the time of year? The last throes of winter trying to clutch at us all before warmer days (and hoardes of tourists) descend for the next few months...

I felt almost ashamed of the dark cloud space that pulled me so far in, that I'd been seriously considering applying for another full time teaching job. Not that in itself there is anything wrong with that, but it makes a mockery of this year - the leap of faith to finally stand up and say 'no, this is what I do'. Writing is a funny old game; pitching is just a surreal cycle of lottery/rejection. Got to be on full power to send yourself out there, knowing full well that the odds are that it will pull in a big fat 'no' more often than the elusive golden ticket. So in those moments of self doubt it's all to easy to stand like a scared rabbit in the headlights, and of course doing that is a brilliant double whammy. If I don't ask there are no rejections, but the stasis equally leaves me wondering what and earth I'm doing it all for.

A lovely friend reminded me though, that this is all part of the journey; an integral part of story structure is the challenges/ obstacles, the dark night of the soul, the all is lost moment. He very astutely reminded me that our story mirrors the story of writing. So beautifully simple, but I'd lost all perspective of that... so here I am, facing the deep dark forest that every good fairy tale depends on. It's that moment of panic - I either go through, or I turn back to where I came from. That's a far worse option; so the only way is on and through.

It's still scary though, knowing I'm right on the edge, in my heart the only option is to plough on through. Can't turn back now, come too far to just settle for an 'easy' teaching salary in September. Got to remind myself why I left that behind, if not forever, then certainly for now, to give this my best shot. So its off through the forest I go.

But, today is Sunday - so perhaps I'll hover here on the edge, for just another day, and plunge in tomorrow...

5 comments:

Travis said...

Thanks for cruising by my place.

I'm a fellow writer, wrestling with many of the things you note in this wonderful post.

I'm controlling my envy for those who actually have submissions in the marketplace - you may get rejections but you have finished manuscripts working through the system.

I'm controlling that envy because it's simply my own fault I have nothing finished. So that is my goal - to finish.

Good luck on your journey. I'd like to check in once in awhile and see how it's going.

miss-cellany said...

Hello, thanks for heading over.

If it helps, the manuscript is, as yet, far from finished. Trying to get going as freelance so I can support my family and keep writing...

Seems there are a lot of us on the journey, at least we have this place to meet kindred spirits :)

Fi said...

Think we're all facing fear and doubt right now - but you of all people shouldn't be!

You're my alumni bet - the one to succeed - and I've got £ on it so you can't let me down. Besides, teaching sucks. Take a lantern of self-belief to light your way... you'll be just fine honey.

(and don't forget, you have to let me be an extra in your film, ok)!

emapple said...

Hi, I'm with Fi on this one - you have an enormous amount of talent and I'd be very surprised if you weren't successful.

I think you're right about the end of winter. I feel very lost at the moment with my work. I can't find the motivation to actually complete something useful.

Maybe we should make a date for wine and chatting for those of us still around falmouth?

xx

Occasional Poster of Comments said...

Yep, this writing lark's bloody harrd, isn't it? (See, I can't even type wiothout mistakes).

Feeling much more optimistic after work experience, though. Helped a lot.

And definitely you have the talent. I've really liked your writing since Derrek's first class (that one before you switched groups).