Thursday, 16 September 2010

The Unwelcome Guest

If someone dares to tell me I cannot do something, I will prove them wrong. Until that objective is achieved, my actions are absorbed by an unmitigated focus. But there is one area of my life where this system of logic fails miserably. Just as I am raring, ready, I stumble.

But the problem is not an inanimate object that can be moved from my path. It exists in the mind- a place with depths too dangerous. Part of my subconscious has drifted outwards into conscious thought. That little questioning voice is fully fledged and vocal. And with every option and opportunity that I let pass me by, through choice or convenience, or unavoidable circumstance- that voice gains strength.

Now, it is far too loud.

It's the fear- oh, the dreaded wrench of gut fear- of discovering what you thought, hoped you were good at, you probably are not. It's the reason why I don't push myself out there into the world. Why I don't send poetry or stories to magazines and competitions. Why I will never approach a publisher with my novel. Why I think my writing will only be confined to this meagre blog. Oh, it is sad.

On the days when the silence is unnerving and stealth-like in its speed to engulf me, doubt is my only company, an unwelcome guest, my constant companion. Always there, its negative waves erode and chip me until I am rubble and dust.

And now, what little self belief I had in my abilities as a writer has shrivelled. It ventured outside with tentative steps, only for a raincloud of doubt to drift over and soak it, in all its greying scepticism.

Some days, reader, I pray for drought.


  1. I know this isn't a fish for compliments, and I suspect everyone else will tell you how good a writer you are - so I won't do that. All I'll say is yours is one of the few (like, two or three) blogs I still read now I've given up blogging. The words you use always make me think and never make me cringe, and I always leave with a faint sense of wistfulness and admiration.
    *Plentymorefishoutofwater - One Man's Dating Diary*

  2. Agree with above- urs is one of the 1st blogs i check ot for updates. Quality writing. It's up to u to make urself known u just have to push that doubt aside because it will always be there. Kate. x

  3. Oh my goodness, no- this seriously was not a fish for compliments post! Oh dear, cringe. No, that's not who i am at all. I was purely posting an update on where i am at the moment- in my head that is. I couldn't think of anything else to write.

    I might remove this post if that is what people think. I do not wish for compliments- i do not need approval/admiration to continue to write. I'll always write, regardless.

    But thanks for the comments, lovely as they are. I appreciate it. I'm pleased that what i have written has been food for thought. That's always been my intention.

  4. if doubt is ur constant companio, there is little space for disillusionment!

    but yes, its good to dream, hope, and live by the dream!

  5. Er, Lou - the first thing I said was 'I know this isn't a fish for compliments post...'
    It doesn't come across like you're fishing at all!

  6. Anyone who gives two shits about the quality of their writing feels like this sometimes. It's difficult, this quest to give form to an ideal. And while having such standards for yourself guarantees a certain creeping self-doubt, I'd argue that it's better than being content by lowering your aspirations. So keep writing and get to submitting, even when there's doubt.

  7. Hunter and Fish are so right. You're one of the few people who really have their way with words. Don't stop submitting. It's a writer's necessary journey.

  8. Fish- sorry. I know what you meant. I was just putting it out there- in case someone really did think i was 'fishing' for compliments!

    Hunter- agreed. I know you're right. I'm building the courage to submit. I'll get there eventually. But this post was written at a time when i really really did doubt myself. I'm feeling a bit better. But we all have these periods. Oh, and i will never stop writing. Nothing will ever stop me from doing that. Even if all the computers stopped working, paper disappeared and ink dried up. I'd find a way! hehe exaggerate much, lou!

    Sarah- thanks for stopping by and for the kind comments. I really do appreciate every one of them. :)

  9. Hey this post is great...It really captures that feeling of self doubt absolutely love it and I a now a follower...Ur writing style is infectious! I can learn a lot from you xx

  10. Apparently I cant become a follower because something keeps messing up but I'll be back dont you worry ;)

  11. ShineTheLight- welcome and thank you for commenting. I appreciate it greatly. And please do come back. :)


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