The Brink: Facing Fear With a New Creative Venture

I’m on the brink of starting a new writing venture. It’s probably the biggest creative challenge I’ve ever taken on. And the viciously ugly one-eyed fear monster is staring me in the face. You know the one. It’s the one that taunts:

Who are you to do this?
You’ll never finish.
You can’t write.
You suck.
You don’t know how to do it properly so why even begin?
You’ll never get published. Why even try?

And so on and so on. On and on until I’ve practically talked myself out of writing at all. Except that I can’t – not this time. This is a project I’ve been thinking about and working on for 3 years and I’m ready to take it to the next level.

But that next level is wet my pants scary. Because if I start, I may never finish. And it might not be good. And there’s a huge possibility it won’t get published. But it’s something I MUST DO. So I will….someday.

No. Not ‘someday’. That answer is my old thinking. I know I must get started. Now. This minute. While the inspiration is hot. Because the longer I procrastinate the quicker the flame will burn out and my project will fizzle out completely.

Way back before maternity leave, June is when I had planned to start. June sounded so realistic. Plenty of time, I thought. Months, in fact. Well, that was before I knew what went into taking care of a baby. I thought I had no time before baby when I lived in New York and worked a full time office job on top of acting. But now I’ll be lucky to get snippets of paragraphs written during nap time. As I learned in Elizabeth Gilbert’s book Big Magic, most people don’t have enough time to pursue their creative endeavors. We all have to make a living somehow and the dream that I’ll be able to write in a cabin on Whidbey Island overlooking the Puget Sound with no interruptions is just that – a dream. The best thing is just to start and keep going no matter how long it takes me. And so I will. Little by little, until I’m done.

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