Had any of these thoughts?
What if I'm not good enough?
What if I never make it?
What if I'm wasting my time doing this?
When I started out to become a writer, I never imagined what it would cost. Writing takes time, it takes dedication, it takes passion. It's a serious emotional risk. When the words don't turn out the way I want, it hurts. And like a skater who slips while trying for that triple-toe, I have to pick my bruised self up and try again.
But sometimes I really want to sit there on the ice and cry.
I got that way last week, while stuck for two whole days on a single piece of dialog. No way was it working no how, and I suspected it was because I'd taken a horrible wrong turn somewhere in the story, and that meant I'd need to back up and start over. It was like the ice broke and I fell through into that dark, freezing current that constantly drags beneath my false sense of the solid.
Submerged in cold gloom, I went through the motions of the day, questioning all my writing goals and dreams. What proof do I have that any of this effort will ever pay off? None! Wouldn't I be happier without driving myself to distraction over nothing more than several thousand words strung together by my overactive imagination?
And then one fierce, hot spark sprang up inside me. I don't care how "good" I am. I don't care if I "make it" or not. I chose to do this, and I'm going to do it. I'm going to do it because I love it!
The moment I thought that, all the bad feeling melted away.
Writing is never a waste of time, so long as I'm always reaching higher, pushing myself, learning new things. What wastes time is worrying about what will come of it. With all the changes in publishing in the past year, I can't begin to guess the future lives of my stories. All I can do is make them the very best I can, then see what happens.
That's exactly what I'm going to do.