Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Fear (and Writing)


Such a small word for such a powerful force. Yet this very word is the reason I have not been writing as I promised myself I would.

Recently I was telling my dad a story about an uneasy moment or two I had on my trip to New Mexico last week. He looked at me, almost shocked, and said, "Kelli, you aren't afraid of ANYTHING!"

He reminded me of the time I wandered around downtown Oklahoma City, alone, at the crack of dawn with my camera and a homeless man followed me around. I reminded myself of the time I drove to the Guads for the first time, by myself, and got up to Hunter Camp alone. Keith was really impressed by that. And when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, it was more of an inconvenience to me than anything. That really got me to thinking, I'm not afraid of a lot of things, or if I do feel fear, I face it and move on.

So why the fear of writing? This is something I have been yearning to do for years now. Is it the honesty? Am I worried that someone won't be happy that my honesty includes stories about them? Do I worry that people won't like what I have to say? Does it really matter?

I think it is all of the above. What I do know is that if I don't write, daily, then there is really no point in my dreaming of becoming a writer. Strangely enough, writers have to write.

In an earlier post I wrote about commitment, which is clearly a problem I have when it comes to creating the life I want for myself. I can commit to my family, my children, to the man I love, but I haven't been able to commit to myself. I can quote fabulously successful people on commitment, I could coach anyone to become something great, yet have failed miserably in my own life. Each time I read a book, I think to myself, "I could do this....I could write." Countless people have told me I am a good writer, I love words and the power they have, and I have a swirling of ideas in my head daily.

Looking back on the last ten years of my life, I know there is much to tell. I have been through a lot and emerged just fine, not where I'd like to be, but fine. I can't help but think that telling my story can help someone else just as other's stories helped me.

I have ideas for children's books, young adult books, novels...... The life of a writer appeals to me, researching my books, freedom to write whenever and wherever. Not being inside an office building or a classroom all day. Freedom to use the bathroom whenever I like. Freedom to eat lunch when I am hungry. Freedom to leave and do research.

So, it is really quite simple. I need to write, daily. When the words come to me, which they do all day long, I need to sit and release them from their cranial prison.

Daily, Kelli, you have to write daily.

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