Oof, we starting with the bar low so there’s no place else to go but up.
Anyway, how are we all doing? Are we adjusting to the ancient curse of living in perpetually interesting times? Excellent.
Beyond the obvious, well, everything we’re going through, I’ve been trying very hard to think about what it is that I want – outside of simply surviving – out of this year.
Last year was a wash. My enthusiasm for writing, while not diminished, was tough to get a hold of. What made it worse was the obvious reason for that creative glut. I’ve found it a hell of a lot easier to have more ambiguous scapegoats. Those five letters (Trump or COVID, I mean same thing) just made everything feel like marching through mud.
That said, there were bright spots. I’ve ranted about them before. Baking. Cat. Agent. All good things. All things that are separate but would be awesome as a single entity.
I also learned something important while being forced into a life of quarantine. I learned about my worth as a creative.
Needless to say, there’s a lot of thinking to do when you’re not on an exhausting commute or occupying yourself with the noise of social living. A lot of restless nights left me staring at the ceiling – still worrying as normal – but also simply thinking about me and what my priorities are. What the root of those priorities are.
Spoilers: no major revelations. More like acceptance of long known truth. My worth is not measured by accomplishment or ticks off the list. It’s not measured by whether I’m esteemed or reviled by my peers. The score simply doesn’t matter. What does matter is being content in what I am creating. And while that’s such a rote concept, something we hear parroted all over social media, its difficult to “get” that point.
So, like the step I took a few years back in accepting my voice, I’ve begun to accept my instincts. I know I can tell a story. I know I can tell it well. Now, though, I believe I can tell the stories I want to tell. Not the stories other people expect or the stories that chase a trend. I’m sick of that. Sick of how it makes me feel trying to measure up to an invisible standard.
A big part of that is also believing that I can do things better. Whether that’s better than others or my past self doesn’t matter. I just want to be a better writer. I want to write better stories. I know that path is paved with my intentions, nobody else’s.
I have plans. I also have books. I’ve got an agent that believes in me and honestly, as thankful as I am for that, I believe I deserve that because I am that good at this.
All this ranting, what I’m trying to say: believe in you, fully. Not just a part of you. Own this shit. Accept what you excel at and what you need to build. Then do it. Do it well.
Happy New Year. May the times get a lot more fucking boring.