I can’t get it in gear, people. I can’t write. I have that November 15th deadline hanging over my head and all I want to do is just fall asleep, wake up, and read a book. I have no one to blame for this mess but myself. I was the one who wanted to submit my work and now I am self-sabotaging myself again.
It boils down to this one thing that I think I have talked about before. I don’t want the American Idol syndrome. I don’t want to send work out that everyone around me thinks is great and in reality it is the worst stuff on the planet. I don’t want to punish someone with my bad work. I don’t want to waste someone else’s time.
This is all a part of the bigger picture. I am not afraid of failure. I can handle defeat. My life has been filled with negativity and unpleasantness, so failure is something I understand. I have the road map of healing in place already. The tracks have been used so often on that map that it looks like the second Grand Canyon. I am equipped to handle failure.
I am not able to understand success. What do I do if they like my work? I will start analyzing everything and I will twist it in my mind to make it a negative thing. I will take the acceptance not as a good thing, but I will think that maybe no one else submitted and they were forced to take my work (which I know is a complete lie). I will think that they just picked me because they needed a female writer to balance out the gender in their magazine (again, not true). I don’t know how to handle something good. I am always looking for the other shoe to drop or the yang to the yin.
Logically I know I am just keeping myself from trying. I think it is because if I keep myself down then I know others can’t keep me down as well. It’s like that theory I have about picking out our own flaws. If we tell someone our work sucks, it is like giving them permission to think it sucks as well. It’s telling others we are aware of the problem. However, we really aren’t because the problem isn’t our work; the problem is we can’t see that we might actually be good at this.
I always pretend quitting my teaching job to become a writer was such a big risk. In theory it sounds like it would be a huge risk. But I didn’t really work on being a writer the whole time I wasn’t teaching. I just stayed around and read books. I hardly left the house. I built up a wall so big and so thick no one wanted to bother trying to get passed it. I did that because, of course, I was hurt and didn’t want to be responsible for hurting anyone else. So I just stayed away from the world and pretended I was working on the next great American novel.
The good news is that I know what I am doing and I know what I was doing. I wasn’t so far gone that I lost myself. I could come out and join in any time.
I am coming out of it. In the last couple of months I have done more to advance my writing career then I did in the last two years. I am becoming more comfortable with seeing myself as a writer. However, I still have miles left to go.
I understand that I am warping my mind and I think this is a common thing that writers do. I’m sure there are millions of reasons why it happens, but I only can understand my own.
I am afraid to become a success because when I do, what would be my next goal? What if I can’t achieve my next goal? Does that then make me a failure? What is meant by those words success and failure anyhow?