I am in the middle of packing, and it’s been a little bit of a nightmare. There are so many things to think about. In fact the process is long and fraught with so many niggly little problems that I’ve had to take a step back from everything, including writing. The cloud of overwhelmingness (I do know it’s not a real word) was growing bigger and darker every day. Packing and writing don’t mix for me, at least not at the moment. Combine that with real life (the everyday normal things) and you have a problem. Each thing distracts the other, and each refuses to compromise with my time, and consequently everything was coming to a standstill.
Needing time out, I decided to catch up on some reading. I have long suspected I may be slightly obsessive about the amount of reading I do as I can’t seem to go one day without reading a book, someone’s post, or sometimes both. Though obviously time consuming, it does have its perks. For me reading provides relaxation and it is the way I learn. Away from the mayhem of “do I keep this or get rid of it because I haven’t worn it or used it in the last who knows how many years”, and away from I haven’t got time to write a thousand words a day, or even ten words, I re-discovered the comfort of answers even when I was unaware I had questions (the quotes from Maya are very telling).
It’s amazing what you find when you aren’t looking, or think you aren’t looking. Normally I am reasonably efficient but I have been struggling these last few weeks. Yes, moving is stressful and very taxing on both the body and the mind. Yes, as a writer the frustrations are constant. I know these things so why the angst. Well, it appears a few things were playing on my subconscious, or I wouldn’t have crossed paths with the quotes I have strewn throughout this post.
I have just finished a huge edit on my novel Unexpected Obsession to ensure it is print worthy (although this could still be debateable). Thank you all by the way, for the comments and ideas. It has made a big difference to readability and has given me direction for my second book. In fact I now have the cover for Unexpected Passion (let me know what you think), and am working on ideas for Book 3. On the surface this all seems pretty wonderful, doesn’t it? Yet I have been feeling uncomfortable. This author stuff is suddenly way too real and confronting.
Living in beautiful North Queensland has been an adventure but perhaps it hasn’t been the right one for me. I miss the culture and diversity a big city offers. But, I also wanted to be settled in one place. Circumstances have made that hard for me throughout my life and I thought it time I belonged somewhere. I should have known that it wasn’t that easy. Too much goes into belonging and if the right ingredients are missing, then the bread dough doesn’t rise. So here I am, moving again, and it’s scary and certainly not what I thought I would be doing at this stage of my life. Then again I never thought I’d be a writer either. This life stuff is suddenly way too real and confusing.
Why can’t I just suck it up and stay put? If I found myself writing here, then why move? Is it wrong to want more? Then I came across this quote by Muriel Strode. She says “do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” For my whole life this is exactly what I have done. I always wanted to be different and do different things but when I was younger and stronger, I had more time and energy to blaze a different trail if the one I was on, failed.
Ironic isn’t it, to be afraid to do what I have always done? It takes courage however to commit to something new at the best of times but as you get older the word courageous can become a foreign one. Does that mean we should settle for the safety of the known? Aristotle believed that “Courage is the first of human qualities because it is the quality which guarantees the others.” Forging ahead despite our fears prevents stagnation.
When I consider some of the things happening in our world on a daily basis and the incredible bravery displayed by some just to survive I am humbled. Surely something as simple as changing where I live, and continuing to work at something I love, shouldn’t immobilise me. My sojourn up here has given me the push to publish. Now maybe it’s time to show appreciation and go live somewhere where I can honour that. It’s all about perspective and that’s what reading does. It reminds us to have perspective.
Till next time
The cover is fantastic and I can’t wait to read it. Along with a print copy of your first.
Following your own path is tough, purely because no one has been there before – not with your worldview, your beliefs & perception. On that path we are continually faced with challenges to ensure we are true to ourselves and this take courage, like you said. Just because it’s the right path doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy, perhaps that is where so many go wrong(including myself for a while) – believing the right path should be easy – but the challenges are where we grow. And I think this is what you love Barb, seeing the growth….in your self and in others. x
I love that you get it. I think that the path is meant to have potholes. It keeps us from getting blase about the important things.
Glad you like the cover. Chris is very talented.
Here’s to continued growth for all of us (:
Thank you for reminding us that we need challenges in our lives in order to keep growing. Sometimes I find myself longing for peace and quiet, but that’s where stagnation lies.
Still the occasional peace and quiet is nice