Passion is stronger than fear

I've been dragging my feet with this novel. I love this novel. It frustrates me, makes me feel, makes me smile. I love my MC and my occasional (ok, more often than not) utter confusion at what the heck is going on. I love when I write a scene and then have to stop because...what the heck just happened?! And why didn't I think of that before?! I love when I overcome a hurdle. When my girl gets what she's after. When people get slapped around or kissed or cry. I like the feelings that come with writing this novel. 

I've been dragging my feet because sometimes, it's easier to ignore the fact that my outline has changed twenty times and my characters keep going where I don't want them to go. And my word is count is so high I want to hyperventilate. And sometimes, just sometimes, I don't know what to say. 
I started brainstorming and developing and writing this beast in September. I wrote 50,000 words during NaNo. I've spent the last two months running from it, or poking a thousand words a week because "I was busy." I wasn't busy. I was lazy. I was lazy and I was terrified. 

It's hard for me to admit that I'm terrified--but I am. I'm terrified that someday someone other than my CP will read it and they will hate it. Hate it. I don't want to NOT be good enough. I don't want to feel like the worst writer in the world. I don't want someone I love and admire to hate my book. I was so terrified that I didn't even want to admit it myself. Until last night, I didn't even know that fear was in me. 

When did that happen? 

A year ago I was fearless. I was ready. I wanted to share my stories with everyone. I wanted to write--because I needed to write, needed to say something. When did that change to fear? I'm not sure. Maybe it's always been there, hidden underneath the surface. 

I read this quote last night...
Passion is complex. Like the passion flower, many layers, many elements must come together to inspire intense emotions in us... To find our passion, we must face our fears, we must be brave, willing to look into our souls to see what interests and drives us, what nurtures us and inspires us to action. What is so important to us that it is worth our risking our fortunes and even our lives to attain?
For me, writing is one of those passions. The problem is that I'd been living as if it was my only passion. I'd put so much weight on that--so much pressure--that it was become less of a joy and more of a "I have to do this." What would happen to me if I never succeed? If I never get an agent or publish a novel? What will I do?

I read some blog posts last night. Two, actually, that I loved. One was from Natalie Whipple and one was the Sara Zarr notes. You should read them both. I read those and had to stop everything. I logged off twitter, logged of facebook, shut down my computer, unplugged my TV--and was still. I thought. I journaled. I prayed. I cried so much. 
In the end, I realized I was so scared of failing that it was paralyzing me. It kept me from trusting in my faith. In my writing. In others. In life.  In my hope. In myself. That's a hard feeling--to know that you are so scared you stop. I stopped trying to writing, trying to find a job I could enjoy, stopped wanting the good things. I even didn't apply to grad school because I was scared of not being good enough.

I don't want to be scared.

I want to create. I want to write. I want to find a job that I could really enjoy. I want to set down roots, to make solid relationships, to live in my community and not just in my head. I'm ready to be a full person. I'm ready to try. To send out queries without the fear of rejection, to share this without worry of people hating it. I'm going to apply to grad school--even though it will be hard and I may struggle.  In the struggling comes the learning. In the learning comes the joy. In the joy comes the passion and the will to make it happen. I won't live a life of fear. I won't be defeated. 

I'm sure I'll be scared as I continue. Fear is part of what makes us human. But I won't let my passions be hidden behind my fear. I'm not that girl; I don't know when I became her but she's not staying.

Now...I will finish this novel. As the end of this marks the end of my fear.


  1. Amazing post, D. Takes a lot of courage to open yourself up like that to everyone.

  2. I hear ya. But it's cool that you shared this. Good for you!


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