Not 'on' to anywhere specifically but just 'away' from some ties that are doing me no mental/physical/emotional good whatsoever apart from keeping the Paracetamol industry in business.
I think... I hope that this move is a Good Move.
You see, I never set out to become the woman who sits before you today (actually it's a good job you CAN'T see me right now in jogger bottoms, tea-stained vest, fluffy slippers and Bags For Life under the Tired For Ever eyes since returning from the physically shattering paid job.) I never expected that by the time I reached 'this' age I'd still be working, much less still wondering what I was going to be when I grew up. I am stuck at Fifteen and I'm still convinced Donny Osmond will eventually notice me lurking in the field he's singing Puppy Love to me in. What?
Writing has always made me happy. I loved and still do love, the way I can paint a scene, create a life, a story with these funny little plastic keys at the tips of my fingers and since there's been a backspace/ delete/undo button, my life's pretty much complete. But lately writing has been making me far from happy. Not miserable as such. Okay then miserable. Not through any fault of the letters or the words; but through the extraneous constraints that I have allowed to become attached to my creative world.
Writing a whole book wasn't ever something I thought I'd do, much less follow up with 4 others and then plunge myself into the writing-to-be-published pond. It's not a place (this metaphorical 'publishing pond') I ever felt comfortable being in and lately I've felt immersed in a bad, soaking-to-my-soul kind of way about the whole thing.
This Blogging malarkay is also not something I thought I'd ever be doing. I'm not a great social butterfly and so social media wasn't ever intended for somebody like me; I'm too easily bruised by offhand remarks and comments that don't intend to hurt but still find a way of getting under my very delicate skin. I don't want to say that I was coerced into doing it but there were so many bright young things out 'there' that WERE blogging and making it look so easy and such fun, that I didn't want to be left out. And I thought it might increase my writing profile. Whatever that's supposed to mean.
I was thrilled when I was asked if I'd like to join the panel of Writers on Strictly Writing. I felt like I'd been 'spotted', 'discovered', 'found'. But 2 years on I'm still struggling to find something uplifting and enthusiastic to say about writing in general and MY writing more specifically and I realise it wasn't quite the Grail I thought it was. Hence my farewell post today.
Facebook and Twitter are other things that can thoroughly depress me, and I don't think it'll be long before I back away from those completely too. Twitter I've never enjoyed to be honest as it gives me the 'playground' heebie-jeebies and I never feel I have anything productive to contribute; I worry I'll be ignored if I just turn up and let loose a random 40 word comment.
On Facebook I have surrounded myself with people ('friends' if you like) who are writers. This also depresses me. By watching their successes, my own non-success becomes way more noticeable and it actually properly hurts like a stab in the heart every time I read of one. This is not good for me.
The writing group that I joined at the beginning of the year is also not really for me, I've come to realise. And I've given it a proper, decent go, I really have. It's not merely because one of my fellow members (of which we are 3) has already been signed by a huge Agent and is having her amazing (no, it really IS) book touted round all the major publishers as we speak, nor that the other member is so clever with his words and has such a beautiful story-telling mind that it makes me feel like an amoeba in comparison, but..... okay then this IS why it's not for me. I feel like Big Bird in the company of Peacocks and Swans; lumpy, cumbersome and a little bit laughable.
I wonder if I'll ever find my niche. I remember my Tutor from the London School of Writing (yes, I started that aged 18 and didn't get beyond Lesson 9 I think - I even borrowed £300 for it which was a MASSIVE committment at that age) telling me that I'd have to tailor my writing to fit a suitable market. But I didn't want to. I suppose even then I knew that I didn't want to write for anybody else, didn't want to be governed by constraints and I suppose if I'd remembered that a little earlier, then I wouldn't have spent the past 10 years beating myself up about nobody wanting to publish my books. They're unmarketable. Years ago I'd have taken that as an insult. Now I'm not so sure.
|Here, have a Jazz-Hands Kitten.|