Really; it’s not as if my confidence is at an all-time high where my writing is concerned anyway. (Is it ever?)
Do you know how disturbing it is to read over and over again that really, at my age with my writing background, I’m basically SOL when it comes to having a writing career of any import?
Between the post from a former MFA-Creative Writing instructor that’s making its way around Facebook, to just general impressions from other pieces about writing, I can only conclude that I’d better not think too highly of myself in the putting-words-together-in-creative-ways department.
As if the inherent fear that comes with deciding that I want to create isn’t enough, I–and people like me–am basically being told that my fear is completed justified just because I haven’t been writing like a lunatic since my early teens.
Wow. Nothing like a little encouragement.
I know I can write. I know I can create. I also know that I have to have a day-job if I don’t want to put the “starving” into starving-artist. I also know that I spent 20 years of my life, damned near 24-hours a day, not writing, but serving the country, all while somehow, magically raising a family.
Forgive me if I can’t simply “block-off” 2-3 hours a day solely for writing. I’d like to see that family once in a while. I’d like to read a book, see a movie, watch the news…
Perhaps, if my only goal was to support myself through my writing, I’d find a way to churn out a ridiculous amount of material and market it as fast as I could, never stopping, never even slowing down, to try to enjoy what I’ve written.
(I’ve seen authors that do that, and their words of “encouragement” were just as annoyingly condescending.)
But I can’t do that. I can’t NOT obsess about every single word I put on the page, every sentence those words form, every paragraph they become.
I can’t do it. I just can’t.
If I ever complete only one or two projects, or make that huge book deal, does that reduce my artistic validity? Does it make my skills any less prodigious than any other author’s?Is my concern about what I put on the page indicative of a lack of writing acumen? Does my concern about how I interact with my loved ones show a dearth of devotion to my writing?
I don’t believe it does.
But you wouldn’t know it by listening to the internet. It seems like, in the all-knowing universe that is the internet, the only hope I have of becoming a “successful” writer is to get a divorce, move into a studio apartment, and devote my every waking moment to putting whatever glurge I can manage onto the page.
Day after day after day.
I hate the fact that I obsess so much. I hate that what I’ve written is deemed unacceptable for publication. I hate that I hate these things. And I truly hate that I am beginning, just a little bit, to hate writing.
Writing used to be fun.
Fuck you, internet..