I've just completed the first draft of my first novel.
It's a huge accomplishment.
So why then am I feeling so frustrated today?
I think it's because the easy part is over.
I wrote it longhand. I'm now in the process of typing it into my computer. And today, I'm stuck on a scene that was one of the hardest ones to write. One that is based loosely, well, actually quite tightly, on an experience out of my own life that was a hard day to live through. And now I am re-living it.
That, and it's humid outside. And everything in my house is sticky. And there are these tiny little ants that just won't go away and show up everywhere, like cartoon characters whose job is simply to annoy me.
I'm pulling out every tool in my procrastination arsenal, to avoid sitting down and just typing. Seriously, Mimi, they are just words. Copy them. Get it done.
Remember, this beats the heck out of a lot of other jobs that you might be doing today.
I've poured a lovely glass of iced tea. My body wants a donut. I tell it that it doesn't, really, it just thinks that the sugar and white flour will make the task easier. It won't. It will just go to my hips.
Ok, so still I'm not being fully honest as to why I'm procrastinating. The real reason? It's fear. Fear that what I've written isn't good enough. Fear that the project that felt, while I was writing it, like it was my true calling in life, that I'd finally found it, fear that it won't be good enough. I've started reading far too many articles and books about the process of finding an agent, editing, getting published, and my confidence in what I've written is waning, fast.
It's the thing that creatives need to avoid. Thinking about whether or not the project will find financial success, rather than simply enjoying the process of creating.
I did enjoy writing it. Delighted in it. Had moments of sheer elation at how a sentence would be crafted. At how a character would take an unanticipated turn. One time, when the phone rang (in the novel, not in my house) the main character answered it, and surprised even me, the one writing the story, when the person on the other end of the phone was someone different than even I expected. Someone I hadn't envisioned yet. But there he was. And I'm still not sure where he came from.
That is the magic of the creative process. When the muse enters in.
Today, I'm just a secretary transcribing the text. It's like I'm just taking dictation. But then again, that's how the writing process felt. Like I was taking dictation from a muse somewhere out there, whispering in my ear.
A ha. There's the answer to my fear. Trust my muse. No, muses. I have several. Stop reading those articles that create fear. Spend my time in the process. Move it forward to the next step.
I will type it now. I'm ready. And then, when I'm done, I'll say "ta da!" And I'll treat myself to a swim.
Blessings to you and yours today. Happy July 1. A new month. A clean slate. What lovely thing will you create to bring joy to life today?