Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Cold, Hard Truth.....

....is this:  people have been very kind and complimented me on how early I get up every morning and write.  They remark on my consistency and dedication, tell me how much they admire that, and because of this, I'm bound to be a success someday.  That sounds all nice and everything, but the cold hard truth is this:

That's not necessarily true.

At all.

Because I'm guaranteed nothing in the publishing business, am I?  Getting up every day at 3 AM doesn't guarantee that my writing career will continue, or improve.  It doesn't guarantee that I'll get better, even.  It doesn't guarantee anything except the following things:

1. that I'll write a lot of words in a year
2. that I'll have done my very best

Not being pessimistic or cynical, here, just trying to have an adequate grasp of the facts.  See, even though every writer should search out their favorite writer and read their biographies or memories on writing, there's a real danger of filling our heads with their stories, assuming that if we suffer and write and persevere like they did, then we, too, can succeed and be just like them.

And that, of course, is patently false.  

See, I'm the sorta person that believes in two things:

1. some things are either meant to be, or they aren't
2. even though writers can learn and improve and become better, I do - even though this may be an unpopular belief - think it's a gift.  Some people "have it".  Others don't.

I draw my beliefs concerning #2 from my basketball career.  Once upon a time, I loved basketball more than anything else. Lived, ate, drank, breathed, slept with basketball. And I worked hard, every single day.  And I did enjoy moderate success, fulfilling enough in it's own way at the Junior College and DIII level.

But, no matter how hard I worked, there were two things I'd never get around:

1. I was only 6'3
2. I was kinda slow, couldn't really jump, and was only an average shooter

So it's the same with writing.  I've been doing this early morning thing for 5-6 years, and I plan on continuing it for the foreseeable future.  And I've made some progress, done a few things.  But the cold hard fact of the matter is this: I could very well never see anything published, ever again.  And maybe I'm only an average writer and storyteller, and that's all I'll ever be.

And I've faced that fact.

Accepted it.

And I'm still going to get up and write, every day.  For now.  Will there be a time when I'll have to decide to continue or not? Really, seriously contemplate hanging it up? Possibly.

But not anytime soon.