You know the one.
The one that says you can’t do whatever you decided you were going to do.
Not clean the house or mow the lawn—you know you can do that. You just don’t want to.
It’s the creative endeavor I am talking about.
Build a She-shed or a Man-cave in the backyard?
It’s too much work, will cost too much, and I l don’t know.
Want to paint?
Well, I’m crummy at it. It will take too long for me to get any good. Everybody else is so much better than me.
Want to write?
Ha. Who do you think you are?
Want to learn a musical instrument?
Well, it’s too late for me now.
The Italics represents THE VOICE.
Since writing is my chosen mode of expression—besides talking and yelling at the dogs to stop barking, I know that almost everybody writes like most everybody walks. Even if you are not a budding (or indeed an accomplished) fiction or non-fiction narrative writer, most of us have emails to answer. If you are a business owner, you have copy to write, and since most businesses these days are expected to have a blog, you have that sitting in the to-do file.
For writers, that blank white page looks as immense as a football field. Yet, you have to get something out. You need to respond to a customer, and while you want to jump on their head and pound them into the ground like a stake, you need to be friendly and meet their needs.
(Once, when my first-born child was little, I said to her, “If you don’t stop that, I’m going to jump all over you.”
Very calmly, thoughtfully, she said, “You can’t jump on my head.”
Of course, she got a laugh, a hug, and a kiss for that one.)
Back to the voice…
“You can’t do it.”
“You’re not smart enough.”
“Who wants to read your stuff anyway?”
“You might as well give up.”
It’s not that you don’t have anything to say or that
you’re stupid. Neither is it that nobody wants to read your stuff. It is,
according to Steven Pressfield, RESISTANCE. (Otherwise known as
procrastination.) And, of course, you are not supplying what your readers want--there's always that little challenge. However mainly they don't tell you so it's a crap shoot.
“If I could implant one solitary thought in the brains of every struggling soul on the planet, it would be this:
That negative, self-sabotaging voice you hear in your head is not you.
Those thoughts are not yours.
They are Resistance.
Everyone hears that same voice.”—Steven Pressfield.
Why the negative likes to get hold of us is beyond me, but we know it’s true, for we have experienced it. And I’ve heard that even those illustrious high-paid writers are visited by the VOICE every once in a while.
First of all, stop comparing yourself to others.
And if you think you have no original thoughts or that everything that can be said has, read what Anna Quindlen has to say:
“Every story has already been told. Once you’ve read Anna Karenina, Bleak House, The Sound and the Fury, To Kill a Mockingbird, and A Wrinkle in Time, you understand that there is really no reason to ever write another novel. Except that each writer brings to the table, if she will let herself, something that no one else in the history of time has ever had.”
Last week after listening to an interview by Julia Cameron on Marie TV, I wrote a brief blog post on www.bestdamnwritersblog.com
Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way, is in its 30th Anniversary year and still going strong.
Because of Cameron’s comments, I felt empowered to do the Morning Pages, take that walk, ask for guidance, and go on my Artist’s date. (Her Four Core tools.)
See, that will keep you so busy you won’t have time to listen to THE VOICE.
Tomorrow I am taking my artist date to the extreme and going to a cabin in the woods. Can you see me that sitting on the front porch in my Mukluks for this morning I got a note from the owner saying I might encounter SNOW.
Ha ha has, don't tell me the Universe doesn't have a sense of humor. I thought it was spring.
But, isn’t it cute?
See ya later.
You know I love each and every one of you.
P. S. A reader (bless her heart) read both The Incredible Yellow School Bus and A Journey Into Inner Earth and found a typo in both. (I just can’t help myself.) One was here meant to be her. In Inner Earth, I left out two words, the and year. (Kindle said I had no spelling errors, but I can find a way to slip something past their watchful eye. Too bad my muse acted like the surgeon who said, “You close.” And I goofed something up. That’s the reason I’m not a surgeon.)
going to beat myself up. I corrected my mistakes, and no one's body was injured. and that's the reason we need someone else's eyes on our work besides our own. We know what we mean to say so well our eyes glaze over.
And, dear readers, I welcome critiques. (Click on book to see it on Amazon) And please notice, I'm jewell d.