9/30/15

A Life Postponed

It's Wednesday night, which is prime time for my writing. It should be anyway, but the universe has conspired against me. After a long day at work I finally got to my office (Starbucks) and there was a bus load of people in line to order coffee. Not hyperbole: a tour bus had just unloaded and lined up right before I got there.

So much for writing over a quiet cup of tea. Also, I have a head cold so I wan't willing to wait in the line. I came home with all the good stuff in my head not making it on the page. It's terrible because I have a couple great, emotional scenes to write and I can't seem to find the space to write them.

I decided to take some cold medication and write a blog post about two things that have held me back over the years:

1. My undergraduate years were some time ago, but I remember beginning as a math and computer science double major. Pretty hefty stuff for a kid out of a rural town. The classes were hard, but everyone said college is hard so it met my expectation. I taught myself the finer points of Trigonometry because the Calculus professor said I would need to know Trig to do the work. I muscled through and survived. Computers were my true love, and I was told over and over I wasn't good enough with the grades I would get. I listened and ended up switching to the social sciences. Looking back, it wasn't me. A different program with different staff, and perhaps better advising, could have gotten me through. Plus, computer engineering was more where my interest was (again, small town boy didn't know the difference).

I let the grades decide for me. It worked out in the end, but I am careful not to let scores or numbers determine my life anymore.

2. So...social sciences for me. I had decided to go straight to graduate school, but had not picked a focus among the several social science fields. I was thinking about one and a friend of mine told me I'd be terrible at it. I listened and did not go into that field. That's a lie, I didn't go into that field for another ten years. It took me ten years to make it back to the place where I knew what I should be doing with my career. I've been in that career for almost a decade now and I've never enjoyed a job more.

I don't let people telling me I would not be good at something stop me from trying anymore.

How this applies to authors and prospective writers:

I just checked my sales for this month over on Amazon and this was a slow month for moving books for me, personally. It'd be easy for me to look at the numbers and say I'm never writing again. I won't. I refuse to let some numbers tell me where to invest my creative outlet.

On the other front, I have 232 reviews over all my works on Amazon. Mostly four and five star. You'll also find some three, two, and one star reviews as well. I'm sure if you asked around, the two and one star reviews are re-read by authors more than any other reviews. I refuse to let a reviewer's opinions (or even facts) make me give up something I am doing.

There, I beat the world.

Or, not. numbers and people still influence me, but not to the degree I used to let them. It's a lesson that it took me ten years to learn and I don't want to have to learn it again.

If you want to write. Write.

The cold medication has kicked in now. Goodnight.






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