For those of you who have been kind enough to follow, comment, or even take a moment to read my blogs during the A to Z challenge, you may have noticed a sudden lack of blogs since letter G. Or maybe you haven’t. Last I checked there were well over 1500 blogs listed in the challenge so it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle. I don’t hold it against you, really. Especially if they took me off the list for the inactivity, which I knew could happen when I started the challenge.
Point is, I wasn’t planning on continuing. Things began to happen, one after another as it usually does, on G day and the days following and it made the blog fall to the wayside very quickly. The other night, while driving to go get Bug from her mother’s house, my husband asked me, “So did you just quit?” Well, he had been in a front-row seat to the various roadblocks and knew exactly why I had stopped. No I didn’t just QUIT. “You know… I love you, but you don’t finish anything. You were doing real good and then you just let it stop.What does that say about you? What does that show your readers? You commited to this and you just let it stop.” I didn’t let anything happen! Life got in the way! My mind could not focus on writing a blog! The dog ate my keyboard!
……… Yeah. I was making excuses. I didn’t realize it, then. No, I was too worried about winning yet another debate with hubs. Of course, the drive to Bug’s house is 73 miles away so that gave me an hour and ten minutes to dwell on what he said. No, there’s no contract saying I must write a blog every day or face legal troubles. It was just my word… a promise to myself that I would learn how to blog and get into the habit of it. I broke the promise to myself and, quite possibly disappointed any reader that may have started to look forward to my blog.
As a writer, I think we all fall victim to the ‘I Quits!’ on a consistent basis. You get writer’s block: Fine, I didn’t want to write this crap anyway! Your first beta reader completely disliked a great chunk of your book, or even all of it: Why the hell am I even trying?! I suck at this! You get the 70th standard rejection from an agent with no idea what it is that turned them off: The professionals think my work is crap. Why would I dare write anything else. I should burn it! (-cough- Unicorn).
The ‘I Quits’ are a plague. A scourge that infects even the most confident of writers and artists. It sinks its pincers into our confidence and sense of self-worth and sucks every positive thought away until you are left with a hollowed husk of uncertainty and questions like “Why do I even bother?”, “Is anyone going to understand what I’m trying to do? Will they even care?”, “Will I be laughed at by my peers?”.
I, for one, am tired of the ‘I Quits’ and think I may have found a cure. Or, at the very least, a soothing balm I can rub into my soul when I experience a flare-up. The best way to overcome these lows is to surround yourself with people that support you and your dreams. Not the people that ask “Are you even going to make money from this?” or “Do you really think you have a shot?” You need people who know that you can achieve your goals, but understand that it is going to take hard work. You don’t want blind yes-men, either. You need honesty but you don’t want nay-sayers. It’s a difficult medium to find, but when you do you will realize that the hard parts get a little easier. Writing support groups, friends who love to read or write… just find the group that does the best job at keeping you level-headed and won’t judge you when things get difficult and you feel like giving up. I realized, after my husband’s slight chastising, that he only said it cause he cares and believes in my hard work. Otherwise, he wouldn’t give two flips that I haven’t blogged since the letter F. My husband, grouped with my RP friends, are my support group. Even when their praise makes me feel all awkward and blushy, they are also there to tell me when something isn’t working. Without them, I don’t think I’d have had the strength to keep on.
So, from today on, I quit quitting. I may not be a part of the A to Z challenge anymore (as far as being on their list) but I am going to complete it. It’s not for them. It’s for me. In the coming days, you might get flooded with blogs until I catch up. I hope you, at least, enjoy reading them. If not, sorrynotsorry. As far as the excuses are concerned, the letter Q is for (I) Quit.