Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Nova On Fear

I’ve been thinking like a mad woman on what my first post should be.  I believe it sets the whole tone of what you can expect from me.  Then the nerves came.  Those are big shoes to fill—well not really since I only come in at a whoppin’ 5’ 0” so the feet come in miniature size as well.  I didn’t know if I should fill you in about myself but for some reason that just seemed far too upfront.  I want you all to keep coming back and learning more about me, as well as I about you, the longer we go with this.  It’s like a book; you don’t just get all the information handed to you in the first page, you find the pieces as the story unveils.

While stressing out about what to write, fear crept in.  The more I focused on the fear the more and more I thought about it.  I’ve been reading a great book I got last year and finally made my way around to it.  I’ve noticed it has been the most helpful little thing that I have ran across for writing.  “The Art of War For Writers” by James Scott Bell.  Now getting back on topic, I remember reading a section of that book about fear.

“The biggest mental obstacle—in writing, in war, in life itself—is fear.” --James Scott Bell

Fear is everywhere around us: fear of heartache, fear of death, fear of clowns (in my sisters case), etc.  I have found from observing a few of my writer friends, how fear can cripple you.  In this there is: fear of publication, fear of putting the words on paper, fear that the words aren’t good enough, fear of finishing, fear of what if no one buys your book, fear that your second book will be hated, fear of letting someone read your words, etc.  There are different fears for each person.

At some point you are just going to have to tell yourself enough is enough and fight through it.  A few years ago I got in a bad car accident.  I wasn’t injured but mentally I was terrified to drive.  For over three months, I couldn’t even drive myself to the store to buy food.  I didn’t leave the house unless my boyfriend at the time took me.  One day I woke up and said I wasn’t going to let this fear ruin my life.  It may sound like a silly thing, but you understand if you have been through something like that.  Not long after, I ended up moving out to LA on my own to live with a friend I hadn’t seen for years.  Was I nervous?  Yes. Was I completely terrified? YES, but I lived through it.  I faced my fears and I proud I did it.

I have fear in my writing life as much as the next person.  The most of my fears lean towards “Am I good enough?” I don’t know tons about writing since I’m still a newb—gamer slang for being new to something.  But what gets me through the fear is writing through it.  No one is perfect—the words aren’t perfect—and the only way to improve is to keep going.  The fear may not completely go away but you will become more confident in yourself.

While filming a movie in CA, I met a girl on set whose career was making people face their fears.  It was actually quite an interesting job.  She worked for this company that very successful people, including celebs though she couldn’t tell me who, went to for help.  They would go through sessions of facing their fears.  She told me an example of a man who was scared of heights.  They would talk about what bothered him and worked their way up to standing on a chair, in which case, he couldn’t even do.  After he mastered that they branched out more until he got the nerve to jump out of a plane.  The meaning of this story is that sometimes you have to take baby steps before you jump.

I’ll let you all know how the fear changes about my first post.  Now that the words are done, I’m feeling a little better than when I started.  I guess writing it out helped.  Who knew my advice actually worked!

What kind of fears do you all have?  It could be anything in your regular life or your writing life, I would be interested hearing about it.

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