Thursday, May 24, 2012

Fears and Genius

A friend of mine recently sent me this speech and I have watched it far more than I would like to admit.  This was one of the most inspiring speeches I've heard thus far about writing.  It has really helped me push on.  Without further ado, check it out before you read the rest of the blog.

First off, we will start with fear.  Elizabeth talks about the fears after her big hit Eat, Pray, Love.  Now I'm assuming you all watched the video, if you didn't, shame on you!  Didn't they teach you to listen in school?  Anyway, assuming that you watched it, she also brings up the fears she had before Eat, Pray, Love existed.  There will always be fears.  It doesn't matter if you conquer one, there will always be another to come and take his place in line.  Now this may seem as if you are never going anywhere but really you are.  Think of a time where you had trouble with something and were scared it would never happen. Now do you remember what it felt like when you over came that fear?  It felt wonderful didn't it?  I know for me, it feels like you are soaring high above and looking down on everything else for one small moment and in that moment, everything is perfect.  

I have fears just as much as any other beginning author.  Currently I am settling in at "are these crappy words ever going to come together into what I see in my head?" Or the well known one that Elizabeth brings up "You should just stop because you are writing the worst book ever written."  A part of me though says, yes that very well may be to someone else but to you, it won't be.  It will be this magical, wonderful little thing that you worked your butt off to make.  You will always have people who don't agree with you but you shouldn't let that stop you.  If everyone thought that way, nothing would ever get done and it wouldn't be the world that we have today with all the amazing stories, gadgets, etc. Can you imagine if the guy who created the internet was told he was crazy and never went for it because he was scared of failing?  I wouldn't be writing this post to any of you today if so.  *thank god he did because I'm far too addicted to the interwebs*

Like her, I also write with a barrier put up.  I don't do it because I'm trying to quiet the wants and needs of readers because who am I kidding?  No one knows who I am.  I do put one up to quiet out myself and the outside world. When I am at home, I put on these huge gaming headphones that drown out everything around me (and also make me look like an idiot).  The moment those go on, I feel focused.  It is almost as if it shuts everything, including me, out.  What is left is just the story hanging in the air and moving my fingers across the keyboard.   

I truly believe what Elizabeth says about the story being outside yourself and your "genius" or "daemon" or even "muse" is the one feeding you the information.  I would like to think it is all me but honestly, I never really feel like it is me that comes up with the ideas that I do.  I do believe that the story is out there and already exists and all you have to do is find it.  My ideas are always random.  It is similar to the story we were told of when Newton was hit over the head with an apple and he created the Law of Gravity.  Now I'm not saying an apple falls on my head every time an idea shows up, but it does happen at the strangest times.  Once, a major part of my story line for #ClassifiedNovel came to me as I cooked a Turkey Burger. #nolie  
The days that they don't show up are the hardest.  That I have felt in the last few months but unlike Elizabeth, I didn't keep writing.  Since my "Genius" didn't show up, I didn't either.  After watching this and also from reading a few other blogs with a similar theme, I have learned: 
1) It isn't always going to be easy.  There will be moments that the words just don't come. 
2) When the words don't show up, write anyway. They may not be the best words you have ever written,    but at least you will have something to show for yourself.  
3) Tell your "Genius" whose boss.  If they want to get any sort of credit or recognition, they better step up to the plate and do their part.  

I hope you all liked the video and at least got something informational from my ramblings.  If not, well there is always next time.  Don't forget to feed your "Genius" until then! *pssst* I hear they like music and good art. *wink*


  1. I LOVE this post. It's raw and honest and inspiring. Thank you for this!