Nervous Resolve

Apparently Saint Augustine didn’t say “make me good, but not yet”. What he wrote is more accurately translated as “Grant me chastity and continence, but not yet”. No, I haven’t read his Confessions – perhaps I should – this book joins a very long list of works to read one day, if only to impress people, feign erudition, or get tricky trivia questions right. It may even be a good read.

Anyway, the point is that I’m about to go back to being good. Tomorrow. I shall be good again then. I shall write regularly and not eat chocolate and drink wine (in the same quantities at least). I shall plan to do things, and actually go about doing them. I shall focus and my focus will remain focussed and if that focus wanders a bit then it won’t be long before I lead it back to being focussed on the right things.

I feel nervous. A little shaky, and that’s nothing to do with the half a glass of red I was hoping to sip while writing but in fact consumed much quicker than that. It’s always nervous going back to work. It reminds me of school, and I hated the end of the holidays. I hated it when they ended and school started – but then school was always pretty good to me, and so every year there was a reminder that it is possible to make too much of what seems like a negative situation. School was alright and work will be alright too. Of course it will. There are people who you enjoy seeing and the work itself is not hellish.

More than that though I’m feeling unsure. A little bit scared. In a good way, for there is a dose of excitement in this fear. However it’s fear of the unknown, and the unknown is a zone without safety nets, where failure lurks. This year will be a year when I make more effort to achieve things. Planning is already underway for a big project – not quite serious thinking yet, more thinking about thinking at this stage – but after thinking there will be notes to be taken and outlines to be written and commencement, setbacks, more work, the hope that the thing has legs and does not go off the rails, and, more than likely constant battles with the pervasive fear of failure. Fear of failure is a natural complex of thoughts and emotions which should influence anyone who has embarked on practically anything which is hard enough to make it worth doing. That is the task then: make my novel/novella/really long short story worth doing. And be confident. Confidence is a quality not handed out equally at birth, but even for someone like me, who isn’t exactly a talk show guest, there is confidence in abundance in some areas, almost too much on occasion, and nowhere near enough in other areas. So that will be a challenge. The whole thing will be a challenge. And challenge is an overused word. But the aim will be to test myself, over a long period, which may even last longer than a year, and that really is a challenge. It might not work, nothing may come of it, it may be almost but not quite good enough, but you learn by doing, and I want to learn. This will be a challenge, and that’s daunting.

But it’s good too.

There will also be more stories submitted to journals and competitions. It’s time to get more serious. I tend to operate slowly and must bare that fact in mind. I must not put pressure on myself to do what is beyond me. But being a harder task master can only be a good thing.

And I have Laetitia, so everything is possible. Work will look after itself. Writing will be harder but more rewarding, and life will be good. Life is good – but it will be better.

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Published in: on January 6, 2013 at 6:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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