Start where you are

The title sounds so definite, so assured – bossy, even. Yet the irony is, I’ve wanted to put pen to paper (digit to key?) for so long now: too long.

For someone who claims to love writing I do, frankly speaking, diddly squat. Nada. Zilch.
For someone who so wholeheartedly dispenses advice on wellbeing and stressing less, why can’t I abide by my own guidelines?

This is more than writer’s block; this is outright fear. Fear of failure. Fear of ridicule. Fear of people reading my words, fear of people not reading my words.

I’ve given myself such stage fright I don’t even know what to write about anymore. My mind has gone blank.

The ideas I have soon get snatched away by self-doubt. I ruminate on them so long they become stale. That is, until I see them reincarnated elsewhere, where another author has breathed life into them, borne afresh.

This further fuels my feelings of fraudulence. This and the perfectionist tendencies I’ve yet to shirk successfully.

I am, however, looking it directly in the eye; learning to face failure, to embrace failure. Surely it’s better to fail than to successfully do nothing.

Enough is enough. Because enough IS enough. Better than not done at all.

The advice always dispensed to aspiring writers? Just write! Write as if nothing else matters! Write regularly, write daily, but for fuck’s sake just write already! Show up and allow your words to spill out onto the blank sheet before you.

How can I write a book if I can barely write a blog post? If I’m not publicly sharing my prose, does it even exist? If my prose isn’t praised – or, hell, even critiqued! – does that make it any less worthy?

How can I create poetry when I won’t allow words to flow?
How can I pitch feature ideas to editors when I’m censoring my own creativity?
How can I expect to ruminate and create when I’m constantly batting away ideas like erratic flies in the heat of summer?

And so here we are. I’m starting here. I’ve added a “Journal” section to the site for my personal musings and reflections. I’m not going to quantify it any further in order to allow creativity to flow. There might be a gratitude list, or a diary entry or a poem or words on a particular topic. It could be long form or merely a paragraph.

It doesn’t matter, as long as I write and write and write and see where the words take me.