Spirit of the Universe, please help me overcome my doubts and my need for validation. Help me to find happiness in writing and in life now and help me to stop obsessing over what I "should" have done. I cannot be anyone else, I can only be me, flawed as I may be. I cannot do what everyone else thinks I should, I can only try my best. Please help me to write what is in my soul and not to worry about what anyone else thinks about it. Please help me to be the best person I can be and to encourage rather than tear down others who may be struggling with doubt themselves. Please help me to do my best. Amen.
I will be answering questions from 52 Weeks of Writing throughout the year. I am already two weeks late and several dollars short.
This book contains a wealth of resources for writers. It is currently only $8.99 on Kindle and well worth the price. If you purchase it through this link, I will earn a small commission.
The first question is:
When you first started writing, why were you called to write?
I must have answered this question a million times in my head, but I think my best answer is found in my review on Readers Roost. You can also learn more about the book there.
I'm going to plagiarize the most meaningful portion of my review.
I had to think back close to 51 years and I'm still trying to think of an answer to this question other than "I don't know. It just felt right."
I learned to read when I was four years old and by the time I was six, I had graduated from Dr. Seuss to Edgar Allan Poe. The first character I created was a fish named Bruce. Fortunately for Bruce, his adventures were much more Seussian than Poe-esque.
This question threw me off balance because I believed that "I don't know, it just felt right" was a flip answer. It took me more than a week to realize that it wasn't a flip answer, it's the answer that six-year-old me would have given. I didn't need a reason to write other than it feeling right.
As I got older, it became ingrained in me to analyze everything until there was nothing joyful or organic left.
So, there you have it. By the way, I'm allowed to rip myself off. I have my permission.
It's the middle of the month and I'm struggling with myself. Doubt always surges at this point. I think I've mentioned before that the beginning of the month starts out hopeful so I take on too much. By the middle of the month, I'm overwhelmed and hate myself for it.
My disability check comes on the third Wednesday of each month. This provides a modicum of respite. It doesn't last long.
The end of the month brings the feeling that I can't possibly cock things up worse than I already have, opening the door for the hopeful stupidity that marks the start of the month.
There is a cyclic quality to this behavior, which is part of why for ten years I believed that I had type 2 bipolar disorder. At this point, I am quite certain that I do not, but the diagnosis made sense because of the pattern of behavior and because of family history.
The question is, what the fuck am I going to do about this?
The answer is, I really don't know. In the past couple of years, I have made significant improvements, but overall, I'm pretty well fucked.
I live on average fifty miles from the nearest city. Going for weekly therapy sessions would be tremendously inconvenient and they didn't help me much in the past. I might respond to therapy with an artistic component. Mostly what I want is for someone to be my friend for an hour once a week, not someone who is going to try and prescribe me pills. The pills don't work for me and when I say that the response tends to be that I wasn't using them right.
Fuck it. I'll keep working on fixing myself, although there is the risk of creating a monster with that approach.
~Ornery Owl Has Spoken~
Here's what I was listening to while I created this post.