Time to choose: Inspiration or Intimidation?

Ever since I put my focus on becoming a writer the way that I read things has changed.

No longer can I just get lost in a book, creating affinity with characters, speed reading through paragraphs as the story picks up pace. I’ve noticed that I’ve become a judge. Judging the author, the words, the meaning behind the words before putting myself in the spotlight.

The Comparison Cashier is out in full force, fingers pointing, scanning what I believe to be truths:

  • Beep: You’ll never be able to write anything as good as this
  • Beep: You’re not serious about writing when you don’t write every day
  • Beep: You’re a procrastinator, you’ll never finish a novel
  • Beep, Beep, Beep!

And I’m left feeling intimidated.

I’ve just finished reading ‘The Girl on the Train’ – Paula Hawkins. It’s the first fiction book I’ve read in ages that had me gripped from the offset. So much so, I finished the book in less than 6 hours! I was in awe.

img_2375

There were many a time whilst rushing through the pages that I said to myself:

This is the book I wish I had written”

At these times the Comparison Cashier was in full force, a thorn, edging deeper into my side. Beeping through the ‘truths’ – repeatedly. I had to get away. So I put on my trainers and I went for a run.

When I run……Ha, I’m saying ‘when’ like I do it all the time. The last time I ran was 25th June. I know the date because I use a running app and there it was, the date – laughing at me, proving that I am indeed a procrastinator!

When I run I feel amazing afterwards. It clears my mind, gives me more energy and allows my creativity to flow. It annoys me that I know this – yet rarely do I don my trainers and take myself outside.

The run highlighted that I have a choice. I always have a choice.

  • I could choose to stay at home or I could choose to go for a run.
  • I could choose to write each day or I could choose to write adhoc.
  • I could choose to be inspired by other authors or I could choose to be intimidated.

I CHOOSE TO BE INSPIRED

The thorn and the cashier began to disappear alongside the doubt pains and unnecessary anguish.

I CHOOSE INSPIRATION

And inspiration is everywhere.

Jeff Cann is a blogger friend. I came across his blog ‘The Other Stuff’ as one of his posts was chosen by WordPress in the ‘Discover‘ section. I was immediately struck by his openness and the vulnerability in his posts, that he had a follower in me.

When he mentioned he had published a book ‘Fragments – a memoir’. I bought it immediately, as I’m all for supporting friends with their endeavours. I’ve just started reading it and five stories in – I’m blown away. I knew this guy could write but this guy can really write!

img_2371

The way that Jeff welcomes you into his world, sharing pieces of his life non-chronologically works so well. I highly recommend ‘Fragments’, Jeff’s authenticity and humour shines through as you see his struggle with mental health, drug and alcohol abuse and life in general. I believe this could be a book that could help many people face their own demons.

I have a warm glow inside as I celebrate what Jeff has accomplished.

That’s when it struck me.

There is no place for intimidation on my writing journey. Other authors are not my competition. Just because someone writes something amazing, it doesn’t leave the creativity pool dry, empty for others. If anything, they’re adding to the pool.

I think to Paula Hawkins. Imagine if she, having read a book she loved decided that she wasn’t good enough to be able to write a novel. I would have never read her book.

Other authors are not my competition. The competition is with myself!

So thank you to Jeff Cann for helping me to remember that.

I’m going to participate in NaNoWriMo which is the National Novel Writing Month which takes place every November. Will what I write be a bestseller? I very much doubt so. Is that going to stop me from writing my first novel? Hell no!

I’ve made my choice.

I CHOOSE INSPIRATION

I would also like to take this time to celebrate the success of some other people I know who have published books.

I met Angela Preston at the Public Speaking Accademy and this woman continues to inspire me to this day. ‘Opening Doors’ is her story of the trials and tribulations of life and shows you what is possible to achieve if you work at it.

img_2373

Surjit Kaur is a high school friend, we had so many laughs at school. Her creativity shone out then as we used to write letters to each other in class and she would be doodling and drawing everywhere. ‘Burt’s Shirt’ is a children’s book and is such a fun read.

img_2374

Each person I see working on their dreams, gives me the strength to be able to follow mine.

Blog post written. I’m {gasp, shock, horror} going for a run!

Emma x

Instagram: @emmalouhalliday 

If you like this post or any other of my blog posts, please feel free to like, comment or share with friends.

Advertisements

A piece of me!

Note: As this blog post includes an overview followed by a short story (3,044 words) this is a long read (13-16 minutes). So sit back, relax and read on……..(or run for the hills).

Overview

As many of you will know, I want to be a writer, I proclaimed it to the blogging world and my Facebook friends in this post – The write path. Since confessing my dreams, alongside this blog, I have:

Continue reading “A piece of me!”

The Adventure Island – Flash Fiction

She crouched over, allowing her lungs to take in as much air as possible. She was tired but couldn’t stop now. The cut she had sustained on her leg whilst running away added to the lethargy.

 

Smells from the shore gave her hope. She could hear the soft night time waves lapping against the rocks. The moon shone between the entangled trees, getting lighter as she neared the beach.

 

She cursed herself and her quench for an exciting life. Promises of love and laughter soon were lost beyond the sea.

 

“Adele.” Jessie panted “Hurry up, they’re not far behind us! ”

 

She picked up pace to join Jessie in the water, wincing as the salt stung her wound. Jessie took charge of the oars when they settled in the boat.

 

An adventurous, immersive and fun holiday Jessie had described this as. She was still waiting for the latter part.

 

Looking back towards the shore as the other teams began to emerge, she felt a sense of satisfaction.

 

Okay winning was quite fun!

(172 words)

*******************

As part of my year of vulnerability I am putting myself out there with my writing. Here I am participating in a Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers challenge. The challenge is to write a piece between 100 and 150 words (+- 25 words) inspired by the photo featured above.
Word Count: 172
Picture Credit: The Storyteller's abode by Louise
Emma x
Instagram: emmalouhalliday