Thursday, February 25, 2010

Finding Fear

Last weekend my local RWA chapter hosted a weekend of workshops. We had some great speakers - 1st Turning Point came to talk about promotion, Delilah Marvelle showed us plotstorming, Michael Hauge made my head want to explode with his story structure, and Bob Mayer gave his Warrior Writer workshop.

I knew going in that I needed the Warrior Writer workshop. I need to get out of my own way. What this showed me was that I need to get back to writing the way I did when my success was more in line with my expectations. I need for it to be more of a priority, not just for me but for my family.

I had 'the talk' with the mother-in-law and Hubba Bubba. Both are on board with trying to help out more...but neither have any extra time. We'll see what we can do...I wish I could sit Babygirl down and explain that she needs to sleep, for her health and Mommy's sanity.

I've also been looking at my goals. Monthy, yearly, 5 year... I did this once before when things were going better...and they haven't changed. I still want to write stories that entertain, that bring people joy, that are fun and engaging. So what has changed?

I'm not sure. I can point at the whirling dervish that is my surprise baby, the husband's job change that stole my scheduled writing time but gave him job satisfaction he was missing, the move, the health issues of family...but that's not it. I think it's fear.

Fear of what? I'm not sure. Fear is a slippery creature, hard to trap, harder still to pitch back into the murky depths. I've run through the usual suspects...

Rejection...while I don't like it, I've learned to put it in perspective
Public Speaking, Public Scrutiny...OK, it doesn't thrill me, but I can do it...usually by cracking jokes
Failure...maybe. But I can't reach the level of success I'm trying for without, well, trying.
Pain...see, I'm reaching here. I do fear pain. Anyone who was stricken with cluster migraines can understand. But it's not related to writing so... some ways we're all creatures of habit. But I hate stagnation. So, even though I will hang on to a pair of 'writing pants' for a decade, I don't think this is my issue.
Success...maybe, maybe not. I want to be in a position where I can give back to my communities, that requires a level of success. Gaining sucess and losing it yet again...that's probably closer.
Commitment...I googled a list of fears and this one came up. We tend to use it in our writing pretty often...but I think that misses the mark too. No, I don't want to be tied down to any one genre, but I haven't seen anyone trying to put a pin in me lately...

I can't find it. Maybe I have a fear of being honest with myself.


therese said...

Maybe you don't have a fear because you've already conquered it.
Maybe you can be happy with how you spend your days.
Maybe achieving a goal is not as important as the journey.

I think there's too much emphasis on getting over fears and not enough on enjoying life. Success means different things to everyone.

Lucy Monroe said...

Great point, Therese! Jenna - sometimes it's not fear holding us back, sometimes it's just finding the new well because the old one ran low. It's not dried up, but it needs repleneshing and life doesn't always give us lots of room for that. So, we need each other. :)