Wednesday, September 28, 2011

"Writer's Trepidation"

Is that a thing? I don't know if that's a thing.

But if it is, I suffer from it.

Mind if I get vulnerable with you for a minute? I toss around lots of ideas for blog entries, short stories, articles, new chapters, etc. throughout every single day. Too many things at once, like a pinball machine in my brain. And then I freak out because I can't decide which idea to focus on. And then I have every intention of sitting down to write, but then I get busy and distracted and tired and suddenly it's late and I tell myself I just shouldn't bother tonight. I'll write tomorrow. And then a week goes by. And then I panic because I have no idea what concept or project to hone in on, and I feel like no one even reads this junk anyway, and at this rate I'll never finish writing an entire book, and how dare I even call myself a writer...and so on and so forth in a downward spiral of creative negativity.

(Yeah, geeze, I know. I coulda been a drama major.)

I imagine that lots of creative people are sometimes plagued by the errant possibility that we actually completely suck at that which we love to do, that we'll never amount to anything major, or never have another really amazing idea again. (Anyone? Anyone? Or maybe it is just me.) But I guess that's not really the point, right? In general, when I'm creating in any way, whether that be with words or paint or music or dance or whatever, I'm doing it for myself. Because I just feel better when I can throw some thoughts and feelings out into the void in my own unique way. It's cathartic. And heck, it's alot cheaper than therapy.

But on the flip side, I'm also a chronic people-pleasing perfectionist. I want you to like what I create, and in turn like me. I want someone to see/read/hear something I've expressed and be moved by it in some way. To think it's good. And because of this approval-seeking sickness I'm infected with, I'm easily shattered by criticism. Therefore fair reader, on some level, I am at your mercy. And a part of me honestly hates that. It's like I'm saying "Look at me! Look at me! Look at me! But only if you like what you see! Please please please be nice to me?" Pathetic, right? I'm working on it, I promise. And I wish I had thought of a nice way to tie all this up in a pretty bow right now, but I just can't think of anything at the moment. I just wanted to be transparent tonight. Full disclosure.

As I sign off for now, I'm just going to keep trying to be brave. Keep putting creative energy out there and letting the chips fall where they may. I'm teaching my first-ever dance class next week, and I'm just as terrified as I am excited about it. What if I stink? What if no one likes it? But I'm going to suck all that up and charge forward anyway.

So here's to letting creativity and excitement overpower trepidation! Are ya with me???

1 comment:

  1. I used to be really indecisive about writing too. I had tons of fun ideas, but either never started them or never finished them. Then I had the idea for the books I've been writing, and I knew it was 'the one'. Although the plot has evolved over the years, there's never been a day that I haven't been excited about the story and its characters. Maybe you just need to find that idea that you'll stay in love with over the years. And one artist to another I gotta say, it's hard to have a genuinely thick skin about your work. Cause since it comes from the heart if people don't like it, they must not like us either, and that's a crap feeling. But unless they can give me constructive criticism on how to make it better I figure they don't know what they're talking about, and definitely couldn't do better, which makes me scorn them in my brain and shazam! I no longer care what they think. It's brilliant :D