Monday, February 11, 2013

A New Year

I struggled at the beginning of this year to come up with resolutions that would be useful instead of damaging and reasonable instead of completely insane. I started looking over the past few years and trying to think about what would really be helpful. And in that looking, I discovered that every year seemed to have a distinct theme.

Some years were all about work. Expanding my writing business was really all that I cared about for the most part. Some years I struggled to find a balance between paying writing work and fun writing work. Some years I struggled with confidence. I stumbled a bit under the weight of everything I was doing. This year is about me getting my power back. Starting a couple of months ago, I really started to see how much power a handful of people had over me. I started seeing that to get my power back, I would really, really have to fight. I'd have to step outside my comfort zone and teach others how to treat me. I firmly believe that we train everyone around us how to treat us, and sometimes that training goes woefully wrong. Not having your own power can shake your writing confidence and give you less force to thrust at the page. It was simply time to get it back.

And so I took a stand. I stopped going to BS events that I didn't want to attend, and I stopped making excuses. "I don't want to go. That sounds stupid," is an acceptable way to turn down an invitation to something that shouldn't exist. And if there's something that you hate, that represents oppression and upset and everything unpleasant to you, giving it to the thrift store isn't enough. You should really just take a rubber mallet to it and smash the living hell out of it.

My only resolutions this year are to trust my own judgement and to finish the novel I've been working on for the past year. Those two things are really enough. I may query magazines, I may finish a couple of short stories and I may decide to start smoking cigars, but whatever I do this year will be on my terms.


Bailey said...

Good luck. I agree saying no should be an acceptable answer to activies that are not suitable for you. I also think the thrift store will thank you for not sticking them with out of date tech. You'd be surprised how "helpful" people think they are donating stuff that it then costs the charities to get rid of because it simply isn't something they can sell and they have to pay to recycle it.

L. Shepherd said...

That's kind of what I thought. I do donate a lot to thrift stores, but no one wants early-90s technology. I didn't even want it in the early 90s.