Thursday, April 22, 2010


It’s a bright, sunny day. There are a few clouds in the sky, and there’s a chance of rain. A little cool, but I spent about an hour and a half writing outside on my balcony. Despite the cheery weather, I’m feeling a bit down. My goal today is to remain positive, to let optimism, and not negativity, triumph.

I have been unwilling to let myself grieve. There have been a number of setbacks lately, and I’ve been trying to keep moving without taking the time to acknowledge them. A short story almost selected for publication. A lack of motivation when it comes to running, keeping in shape. A novel that I can’t seem to move forward. The lack of interesting jobs in this new town I call home.

For the last couple of weeks I’ve been caught up in my own self-pity party. The worst part is that self-pity makes it even more difficult to show up at the page or easel. And despite encouragement from my believing mirrors — that I shouldn’t give up and that things are going to work out — that’s not how I feel. I feel discouraged, and I’ve let that discouragement carry me.

I’ve worked hard on a novella that I’ll be submitting to a literary contest next month. I wrote and performed (in French) a song that was well-received. I’ve started a new series of paintings. I’ve started writing a new novel, a story that I’ve wanted to write for a long time but have been afraid to, fearing how it may one day be received. But I’m letting myself write it for fun, no longer caring if it sees the light of day. When I step back and look at things, I’ve done a lot. In the face of discouragement and doubt, I’ve kept on working, despite what I may have thought.

My mood is beginning to lighten. As I sit and write, outside my writing room window I see a young man with his new puppy. The puppy is playful and inquisitive. They are enjoying the day, which is young. They are having fun. That reminds me that it’s all right to have fun, to write for the sake of writing. So that is what I will do.

It’s too nice of a day to let discouragement reign over me. Discouragement has no dominion here.

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