I can’t write.

I’ve been afraid of it for days.

I open my word document, stare at the blank page begging to be filled. I open my novel, stare at the first words. Then I realize the sheer impossibility that those words will ever be the right ones, and I can’t stand the sight of my own writing.

I am a perfectionist, and I despise the imperfection in my own writing. My very first novel was a tattered notebook (written when I was about nine years old), and there were times even then when I would hate the sight of my own writing. And now, seven years later, staring at a computer screen, I’m not any better. I can’t do this. I’m not capable of carrying such a rich tradition, the tradition of human expression, on my weak shoulders.

I am still struggling, still scared.

But I am still writing.



3 thoughts on “Afraid

  1. I was right there only a few days ago, and yet today I wrote up a storm. You, too, will emerge from this fear. But know that what you’re feeling is pretty normal, at least in my experience. When I read a fantastic book, it is my routine to compare myself to that writer. And that is UNFAIR. You have things that ONLY YOU can write about, Mary … stories inside of you that are YOURS ALONE, God-given. So … the way out of the funk is through it. Keep writing, which is exactly what you said you’re doing. So keep it up!

    And remember that with every year you write and every great book you read, you will grow and become better as a writer. Again, the way is THROUGH it. In my life, I have had to write a whole lotta trash in order to break through to something beautiful.

    1. Thank you! Just now I was actually able to look at one of my old novels for the first time and remember what I had loved about it. I’m still sort of in that funk, but I can see the end, because I’ve been re-introduced to my characters. (:

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