Tag Archives: avoiding writing

Trust, that elusive animal, or Humber, week two

It’s coming up to the point of no return. Today is the last day I can withdraw from Humber’s School for Writers with no fee penalty.

I have to admit it’s looming large in my head. Not that there’s anything wrong with the program, and I am lucky lucky to have a mentor who I love reading and who has, I believe, a similarly twisted sense of humour to mine.

But I’m afraid. I’m afraid of letting myself down, I’m afraid of failing again, I’m afraid of starting something that I might be going to fail.


And I’m SO good at NOT writing. I find it very easy to doubt myself, my ability to stick to anything, to see a project to completion. My lifetime script has been that I am an initiator, not a finisher. But that’s not strictly true, I know, if I think back. But I still don’t trust myself. And on the other side, I hate when I don’t try something out of fear.

Not sure where my messed up self comes from, don’t have time to dig deep enough into my psyche to figure it out today, but I know it’s there, like a big rock in the middle of the stream.

It’s not just me I don’t trust. I could list the names of trustworthy types I feel I know on the fingers of both hands (on a bad day, just one). Like Nova Scotia weather, you can come to rely upon a sunny day only to find rain driving into your face. I’ve become a cynic, not totally by myself, but with some considerable help. And fog.

But, when you have trouble trusting others, and you can’t trust yourself, either, it gets pretty murky out there. I have to start somewhere.

Maybe I should take a page from Neil Gaiman, another favourite author.



Writing resistance, or maybe I need to do something else

I spend a lot of time NOT writing.
It frustrates even me. I vowed to focus on writing from September to December and see what I could get done in that time period but I’m flagging already and it’s at least another 2 weeks to December.
My plan was to end up with the start of several things to revise, things I could work on in the gloomy months of January to March before springing springlike into the publishing world in April.
See, these plans are just not working.
When I write, and I get immersed in my little world, I’m amazed what comes out of my head. Some of it seems actually okay. Most of it needs heavy heavy revision.
But my resistance to getting started is growing by leaps and bounds.
It doesn’t help that I live surrounded by many many books I want to read, all of which are better written than I could do.
It doesn’t help that sitting for prolonged periods isn’t great for me (or anyone else), or that it usually sends me off to sleep, perchance to dream, but definitely not to type.
It also doesn’t help that the thought of all the fiddling around to get published doesn’t appeal. The query letters, the sending books around on visits, the waiting, the editing, the fussing. I don’t think I have the interest anymore.
I wish I did.
But it seems wasteful, sometimes, when there are many other things I want to do.
I know I can be a powerful writer. But perhaps there are other ways to use this. I’m writing for Amnesty again on December 10th, for example. I can and do write letters to the editor, comments to the CBC, letters to elected officials.
But the other stuff feels like dithering, and I’m boring myself. I sit at the computer to write, and lose focus almost immediately. I’d rather be exercising or rug hooking or doing anything that involved my body, rather than my head. Or immersing myself in the writing of others.
There’s so much still to learn and know.
But am I simply resisting what I should be doing?
If so, I’m getting pretty darn good at it.