Does questioning ourselves help or hinder? A very debatable question, and depends on who you ask!
Just the other day that very thing happened. I was questioning my writing skills only after I imagined myself getting an award for an article I hadn’t even written yet. And then when I managed to come down to reality, as I waited for a bus to take me home to my tiny apartment, I then decided I was going to find some award winning articles, pour over them, and learn how to improve on my writing super fast. In fact, I had convinced myself that once I learned all of this super duper fast, there would be no holding me back and I was going to take the writing world by storm. But to tell you the truth I still haven’t even looked up any articles yet, and I probably never will.
So yes, I have been questioning my writing abilities, lately and feel I don’t read enough, which is true. And of course many great writers read a lot. And to be harder on myself I even started another wanna be novel that is going to be beyond belief in my fantasy world, but in truth I don’t even have 5000 words yet. The plot is petering out to not much and as usual my enthusiasm is waning; another unfinished project to throw on to my small miserable heap.
In fact, the timing of my own questioning couldn’t have been any more synchronized to bring me smack down to an absolute concrete reality when yesterday, on a lovely summer stroll carrying my old digital camera, snapping the odd picture here and there, looking like an overzealous tourist who of course, in her fantasy world, believes she might become the next top photographer, happened to walk through by accident or a nightmarish coincidence the ‘Word on the Street Book Festival’. This is an event where hundreds gather to buy published, and I will repeat published books by some of the best talent, so they’ve been described. Talk about getting a kick in the realities as I walked past the tons of authors signing books that they had finished writing, and of course will repeat ‘published’.
And then to jump forward to my experience of today, when an article I wrote for a newsletter, a tiny newsletter not many people read – I must add, was edited to smithereens. Oh my ego was dashed, dashed to a pulp. My dreams of winning an award floated to the ether, and my heart sank like a sunken treasure chest never to be found for a hundred years. Gone now, for a second or two, was my disillusion of being famous, charismatic and so on and so on that I rushed home, closed the door and became a recluse for about 5 long minutes.
But I must add, on a brighter side to my injustice and dilemma, that even though I am not published, or particularly close to it, I still get a kick out of writing sometimes, and I do have to admit that falling on your ass occasionally can be good to keep reality in balance.