The plague of doubt
Published: December 20th, 2019
Have I got writers block? It sounds like some sort of strange disease that only affects writers. Something has definitely got in the way of my fiction writing over the last two weeks. I have had a bug that has been flying around. I assume these things actually fly. My family has had it too – weakness, horrible cough, sore throat and a blocked nose. Awful!
But what has been most awful is that my writing head has not been working either. This bug has been attacking my confidence. Not only have I been unable to write – I have been questioning why I even try. Perhaps the name of this writing bug should be DOUBT! It has crawled into every crevice of my head and forced me to ask questions about my writing.
DOUBT and I have been having a conversation:
D: Why are you bothering to write?
Me: I love writing. I’ve written for thirty years. How can I not write? Writing is inside me. I wake up with a pen inside my head – just waiting to go.
D: What do you enjoy most?
Me: Using my imagination – escaping from myself into the minds of other characters
D: Why do you want to escape?
Me: Don’t we all want to escape something – I can’t imagine a life that revolves around me and reality.
D: What do you hope to gain?
Me: Recognition mainly. I don’t suppose I’ll earn much money at it – only the big boys achieve that.
D: Then why keep on trying?
Me: Because writing keeps me going. I have to have hope. Writing is an expression of me as a person. Even when I am writing for children I am reaching deep inside myself, into my secret, inner thoughts.
D: Do you really think you are good enough to be published?
Me: Truthfully – I don’t know. But hope pulls me through. I do need to improve my writing and get better at reworking and polishing. I enjoy the writing more than the editing – but the latter is what matters if I want to be published and sell my work. My writing is an expression of the real me.
D: So how are you going to defeat me?
Me: By recognising that you are fake. You are not real. You are only a bug that gets inside my head. But I am the one with the words. You only ask questions. I have the answers. And I will make my answers work for me. So out, out, you bug. No more questions. Let me get on with my writing.