Faith, Strength and Losing Control

On the Tuesday morning that I cried in the shower, something very freeing happened.  I let go of the rules I had imposed upon myself and gave myself permission to write about anything I wanted – simply for the joy of putting “pen to paper” as it were.  (Except, of course, it’s rare anyone actually puts pen to paper these days.  Maybe I should have said, ‘fingers to keyboard’).

I don’t believe I was aware of how immobilizing my good intentions were.  The truth is facing the tables I had created to chart my progress only charted failure.  I could never meet the high expectations I had set for myself. They had to go.

I know there are plenty of writers, teachers and life coaches who would suggest I’m making a terrible mistake.  That if I don’t have a plan – if I can’t see a clearly defined goal – then I have no chance of reaching it.  I’m willing to take that risk.

Besides, I do have a goal.  It’s simple: be a better writer.

You’re right.  It’s a goal that can’t be quantified.  I won’t be able to – in five weeks or five months or five years – announce to the world “I’ve done it.  I am now a Better Writer.”  It will require faith.  And it will require that I let go.  I have to believe that if relinquish control of the flow chart that took over my life and instead find the strength to build a deep and unshakable foundation of discipline – if I write every day, relentlessly, without fail, about anything I want – then I will learn how to write.  I will be a better writer.  Goal.

As much as I would like, someday, to have those other things – a book to call my own and an audience who want to read it – I must consider this time in my career as a writer a precious gift.  This is my time to explore, to make mistakes, to discover if I have an affinity for fiction or personal essay.  It’s my time to provide myself the space to discover who I am as a writer.

And that’s what I’m going to do.

7 thoughts on “Faith, Strength and Losing Control

  1. Hi,

    Phewww…it ain’t worth crying about. Pelase don’t get upset 😦 I know it’s frustrating but reading your post I feel sad for you. I often read about aspiring writers agonizing over their writing abilities. I don’t aspire to be a writer I just enjoy writing… and developing my own style. I think that’s the key enjoyment 🙂


    • Oh, the crying in the shower was a wonderful release. Nothing to fret over. It just surprised me, that’s all. I’m done with the critique group and have stopped work on the novel to focus on a few personal essays. And if you read today’s blog post (24/3) you’ll see that I’m taking a break from the blog as well to focus on something deeper than the screen on my laptop. “It’s all good” as they say. And the truth is – you’re right. It’s all about enjoying the process. Writing because it feels good.


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