I have been attempting to provide greater insight and depth from a personal level in my posts. If you have been a reader of my blog from the beginning or a new arrival, catching up by reading prior posts, you are well aware of my thoughts on what inspires us to create. Sources can be a tad nebulous or venture into the conventional but the one thing captaining the ship is our mind. I provided a couple links below of what I learned just researching the excerpt for this post; read at your leisure.
In my, This is not about Me, post I touched briefly on rethinking how I plan to shape my approach to writing not just the Sy’Arrian Legacy Series but potentially new content as well. This post will be more about what I think many of us struggle with everyday no matter your age, socio-economic status, gender identity, orientation, or mental health status; almost sounds like I am trying to insert a non-discrimination clause (smile…). Put bluntly, it is what we say to ourselves silently, so no one can hear us and pass judgement, which informs our decisions and influences our actions.
What I just mentioned is certainly not a gotcha moment, but I do not think we truly realize how much our inner dialogue shapes a reality not based in fact. It can often set expectations to a grandiose level where we experience one disappointment after another, not grasping it is largely due to a lack of self-awareness. I am not pulling this out of thin air; I have walked it and understand how challenging it can be. Case in point.
In the last few months, I have struggled on a personal and professional level both of which I will not thoroughly delve into here. The common denominator were those unrealistic expectations I referred to above and most were self-inflicted. On one hand, have you ever completely agreed with advice given to you buy a mentor or family member fully understanding its validity, while on the other your mind sabotages said advice by saying you are not good enough no matter how significant your accomplishments? If so, join the club.
The Cradle of Destiny was published in July of 2018, which as of the writing of this post is less than a year ago. It is a story I have tirelessly worked on and fine-tuned since I was 16 years old. As I have gone through personal growth, it has as well, coming to fruition in the final product those will see in either electronic or printed form. Since its publication, I have done what I can to promote it based on having zero knowledge of an industry I understand will require trial and error to navigate. When I did not make any sales during the first quarter it was released and only $12.00 the following quarter, I looked at myself in the mirror and asked, Why bother? In that specific moment, I realized my own contradiction.
In spite of my prior internal musings where I expressed logic by saying, You’re a new author, so do not expect too much, or It’s not like you are Stephen King and people will be lined up to buy your book, I still assigned failure to my endeavor. I effectively dismissed everything and everyone which helped me get to the present moment. I verbalized the astute and rational points others were attempting to convey in order to allay my self-abuse, while wordlessly dismissing what I knew was right as appeasement. Oh, they are only saying that to make me feel better, is what I would say inwardly.
This vicious cycle lead me down a path of lethargy, where my goal of starting book two, The Fury of Ages at the beginning of 2019, stagnated. I buried myself in busyness at both home and work to avoid what my mind would not allow me to forget; I am a writer and the flow of creative energy never sleeps. Much like how the Sy’Arrians view their relationship with Akasha; namely, it is a synergistic relationship, I know the energy of the creative process is harmonious. What I/we need to understand is this energy, like any other relationship has ups and downs, requiring a willingness to develop the fine art of self-reflection. It is not easy, I get it, but it is something we can obtain with enough hard work and support along the way.
If the above was not enough, toss in a promotion at my place of employment I did not obtain, which would have been a boon for my husband and I, for insensible reasons. Although I had been in the position for the past year, a position whose duties I was told in one breath, I performed very well, while in another given the following reason as to why I had not been picked after a rigorous recruitment process, It came down to who had the most experience and what we were looking for in the future. This reasoning I still do not agree with but have since let go of its arbitrary nature.
I often take a moment to reflect and laugh at my first world impediments. In the grand scheme life could be much worse and I am thankful for my placement in a strange, chaotic world. Nonetheless it does not and should not diminish the path our minds take towards self-awareness. A struggle is a struggle; how it is faced is the most defining.
So, I took to heart what others have told me. I soon realized what was glaringly obvious to them. My emotional investment in The Sy’Arrian Legacy Series although understandable, had put my expectations for its success on too high of a pedestal. This elevated nature had also closed my mind off to the possibility of creating other unique titles because I could see nothing else. Once I stumbled out of the fog, well, if I am to use a popular metaphor correctly, let’s just say I saw the light.
In the end, my vigor and enthusiasm has returned albeit in a different form. I dug in to my old notes from when I was 15 for new content and have developed a thorough outline for another science fiction work having a James Bond’ish feel but set in the 26th century (2558). A renewed interest in a fantasy-based story is also on my radar but at a more leisurely pace. I will begin book two, The Fury of Ages shortly, while shifting gears between it and my 26th century story, which I am currently fleshing out the plot. Remember what I mentioned about the creative flow never sleeping? Look what happens when you give it space to free itself and go with the flow.
Bottom line? Temper your critical mind with wisdom and humility, while allowing those around you to keep those expectations at the ground level.
Feel free to post your questions, comments or concerns. I will respond, if need be, when I able.
Information in this article was obtained from the following sources and not considered exhaustive:
This link is a repost of a piece from Tricycle magazine. Aside from the article overly inserting and dare I say lazy use of “that” all over the place, it is an interesting read from the site Fake Buddha Quotes: https://fakebuddhaquotes.com/we-are-what-we-think-all-that-we-are-arises-with-our-thoughts/