Monday, March 11, 2019

Haibun: To Save Sharalima or Burn Down Manderley

I am hoping against hope that I will stick to the promise I make here, but I am nothing if not inconsistent. 
I need to make a promise to stop writing and stop it for good.
For me, writing is a fucking waste of time, and promoting my writing is a waste of money. I don't know why I keep doing something which has been a proven failure just because my writing abilities were always above my grade level when I was in school and I tested in the highest percentile on my SAT scores in English. I later tested out of my basic English courses with the CLEP test. So the fuck what? This only means that my reading comprehension and basic writing skills are somewhat higher than that of the average bear. It doesn't mean that I can write anything with popular appeal.
The thing I do which makes the most money (and the less than $10,000 I made last year doing it shows that it isn't exactly lucrative either) is delivering food. I don't mind delivering food, although I can't say it's exactly fulfilling work. However, what I should be doing is delivering more food, not wasting my time writing shit that has zero popular appeal and thus zero money-making potential.
I realized after spending thousands of dollars to publish two failed books that my writing lacks popular appeal. I told myself that henceforth I would do such writing only for myself and perhaps share it with a few fellow bloggers. If anyone liked it a little bit, fine. If no-one liked it, also fine. After all...

So, realizing that I am never going to make any money off my beloved craft, I opted to also start collaborating on Kindle smut projects, because, apparently, some people are making a living doing this. I've been doing it for almost a year, and a book gets sold here and there, but it comes nowhere close to making me a living. The only saving grace is that at least I'm not spending thousands of dollars on a POD publisher to spread smut around.
In February, I participated in a writing contest on the Write-Edit-Publish blog. I told myself I didn't care if my piece won or not. I don't write to win popularity contests. I told myself that I was writing because MY STORY DESERVES TO BE TOLD!!11!!!1!1 I told myself that I wasn't even going to read the post where the winners were announced because I knew I wouldn't be one of them. My writing is too weird, too lacking in popular appeal, too "ME." But then I went and read the fucking post anyway because WHAT IF I DID WIN THIS TIME???? WHAT IF I FINALLY FOUND ACCEPTANCE FOR WHAT I DO???? WHAT IF I HAVE GAINED A MOMENTARY FLASH OF FLEETING POPULARITY WHICH WOULD VALIDATE MY HERETOFORE WORTHLESS SHITPILE OF A LIFE????
One doesn't have to be a fucking clairvoyant to predict that no, I did not win the contest. I wasn't even an also-ran. My story's title appeared on the list of participants because it didn't break any cardinal rules. I wasn't surprised, but I was, nonetheless, very disgusted and angry with myself for participating in the first place, full well knowing that I would never be ONE OF THE WINNERS. 
Losers don't win, Cie. Get that through your thick, shit-filled head. LOSERS DO NOT WIN! And you, Dumpling, are the dictionary definition of LOSER.
There I was, doing that damn thing that I thought I'd moved beyond, hoping for acceptance and approval, hoping for a pat on the head and an Attagirl when the truth is, down inside I'm still the unwanted kid whose "friends" only play with her because their parents tell them that they have to. I'm still the kid watching her "friends" walk together up to the old gravel pit behind the faculty housing at the college where my father taught after the same "friends" had told me they were busy and couldn't play that morning. 
I'm still the same stupid kid who took the shortcut and beat my "friends" to the pit and hid in the hole until they came by and expressed surprise at finding me there. For once in my worthless shit stain of a so-called life, I had a moment of bravery. I called them out on lying to me and ditching me. They followed me back down the path, telling me that plans had changed, that their parents didn't need them to do the thing they'd told me they needed to do. I said that they didn't bother lying to me and kept walking.
They continued begging my forgiveness. They didn't want to get in trouble with their parents for being rude to me. I was so desperate that I let them convince me that we were still friends. Not sure how we could still be friends when we had never really been friends in the first place, but I convinced my sad, lonely, pathetic self that my "friends" were telling the truth. 
My "friends" forced themselves to play with me for about 20 minutes, and then one of them looked at his watch and said it was time to go inside and watch a TV program. I asked if I could come to watch too.
He said no because his parents told him that he and his sister couldn't have anyone over that day. I accepted that explanation and asked what the TV show was called.
"It's called mentally retarded," he said.
Then Jason and Marty, who was not a member of Jason's family, went into Jason's house.
No matter how hard I try not to do it, I still end up turning back into that pathetic kid who nobody wants to play with. I'm tired of having her come out. Every time I allow her to do anything, she just fucks up my life. She immersed her loser self in fictional worlds, which, I suppose, is where the whole writing thing comes from. She's stupid and a bore, and I want to kill everything that ever meant anything to her so maybe she'll finally fucking go away for good.
I was watching the Midsomer Murders program, and in one episode, a romance author named Delphi Hartley has run out of money and is being forced to sell the home she's lived in all her life. She throws the manuscript to her latest novel in the fire because, as she says, "I love my characters and my stories, but if nobody wants to read them, why should I write them?"
It has been proven to me time again that nobody wants to read my stories. I JUST NEED TO FUCKING STOP!
I really should delete my writing. All of it. Every single word that I've written in the past 30 years should be deleted. I should delete all of my blogs. Any writing done on paper prior to my moving pretty much exclusively to writing on the computer should be burnt. I should not leave a single remnant. I need to stop writing and eradicate every trace of ever having done so. I need to stop lying to myself.
I am having difficulty pulling the trigger on deleting these files because I am nothing if not a wishy-washy lameass loser.

I dreamed that an angelic being came to me. She had long blonde hair in braids and a robust body type like the Valkyries in productions of Wagner's "The Ring" where having a full body type isn't seen as a character flaw. She said that her name was Tarka and that she had come to tell me that I should save Sharalima. I knew that she was referring to the world where my stories were born, even though I have never used that name myself.
I don't know if Tarka is an actual "supernatural" being, or if she is merely brain sweat. I want to believe her, but I honestly think it is far too late for me and that Sharalima is nowhere near as precious as she makes it out to be. Frankly, I think it has no value at all. I think it is time that I torched it and all its locations and creatures the way the wrathful Mrs. Danvers torched Manderley. 
I think that it is time for Sharalima to be buried by time and dust. No-one will ever miss it.

Never a winner
Not even good enough to
Be an also-ran


I put the word "supernatural" in quotes, because even though I believe in the possibility at least of those things that some people would label "metaphysical," I do not believe in the supernatural. Everything, including any ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties that may exist, is part of the natural order.

1 comment:

  1. I don't think you should delete all of your writing. It has value because you like it. That needs to be the only value that matters to you.


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