Hello friends, how are you today?
I’ve been in avoidance mode for a while but decided today was the day and that made me feel anxious.
Time is moving and I’ve stayed away too long. Back to the book I go.
A printed copy has been lying in the drawer for weeks, waiting for me to get my pen out and read the hard copy for the first time, make notes etc and then, you know, get on with it. Get on with editing and writing the next draft.
Two days ago I made progress, I took it out of the drawer and have been carrying it around the house with me since, meaning to start, or just open it. That would have been something at least!
This morning with the house to myself a few hours I forced myself into it. I told myself, just one chapter, just read one chapter.
I began. The first page or two took some concentration, anxiety bubbling, I had to read them a few times before I relaxed and got into a flow.
‘You never had this problem Michael.’ (to Michael Collins there on the mantel)
Tea sometimes helps, or coffee. This time it’s tea…
I couldn’t figure what was wrong with me? I mean the book is written!!!
That’s supposed to be the hard part. The feedback has been good so far and even though there’s a lot of work to do and it’s daunting, I know I can do it. I believe in the book, in the story, and even if I don’t find an agent or publisher when I’m ready I can always self-publish, so as already asked, what is wrong with me?
‘You never have this problem Ernest…’ (to our cat Ernest Hemingway, all zen in his book nook. The children think ‘The Patchwork Cat’ is about him : )
Still with the anxiety or it with me, I worked my way through 30 pages. Phew! What a relief! I know tomorrow will be easier.
With all this in mind and just sitting down to think about and write this post I figured out what was wrong with me…
I’m afraid of heights but not of falling, I’m always afraid I might jump. It’s what I could do is the problem.
In this case I know that if anything goes ‘wrong’ with the book, if anything holds me back, it will only be me, I’ll have sabotaged myself in some way.
I don’t know if this makes sense to you but I feel much better and ready to go on now. This realisation in turn reminded me of a quote I found and loved this week and of the image I put with it for facebook…
‘Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.’ Kierkegaard
I looked up the author and found this article on the ever brilliant ‘Brain Pickings’ titled ‘Why Anxiety Powers Creativity Rather Than Hindering It.’ You can read the entire piece HERE
‘The more creative the person, he held, the more anxiety and guilt are potentially present.’ Kierkegaard.
I’ll take that thank you. Did I say I felt better? I do. Just don’t let me near any cliff faces : )