I’ll be walking home from class, the icy wind scratching at my face when BOOM – I come up with the most brilliant idea for a book. The next Great American Novel. Perhaps even a Nobel Peace Prize. As I sprint home, characters and plots spinning around my head, I’m really confident that this time, this is it. I’ll fling open the door, grab my computer and notebook, open a blank page and then it all disappears. It’s happened more times than I would like to admit. The ideas evaporate, off into the abyss of Stories I’ll Never Tell.
Why do all my thoughts escape me when it becomes time to write them down? Am I too shy, of even myself? Is it the fear that these ideas, once typed out, become real? Maybe I’ll realize that my idea was silly, or already over done, or just plain old bad. Maybe losing my thoughts to the abyss is better than realizing that they weren’t worth writing out.
It could also be my fear of commitment. Sure, I can come up with some outlandish plots, but sticking to one concept for a whole paper, nevermind a whole course or BOOK is just too much. As the impending commitment to a capstone topic looms ahead, my assurance on selecting just one subject to marry dissipates. What if I run out of things to say? What if I’m ten pages in, and realize I hate it all?
I absolutely loathe to use this quote, but I’m realizing it might be the only proper way to sum up my feelings. “Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game”. Yick. But, credit where credit is due. It’s true – I am afraid of failure, of judgement, of having my ideas be bad. I’m afraid to play the damn game. This semester, and essentially the rest of my life will be a struggle to find confidence in my writing. It will be the conflict of marrying an idea, but letting it flourish. It will be the battle of Blair versus the abyss.
Establishing rituals is one way to combat my fears. Open to hear any other suggestions on how to get over my fears 🙂