The effort to move past fear…

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The title may be wrong in wording for some, but today, for me, it’s correct.

I’ve been having difficulty parsing my brain with writing, editing, depression, and sobriety.

A couple of those go hand-in-hand(Sobriety and Depression).

But the writing, I don’t know how to deal with it.

I’ve always felt that I must write something new every day. Something on a new project must be written daily.

That’s been my go to for as long as I’ve been writing and maybe that’s part of the problem.

I wonder if the idea that something new has to be written daily destroys my confidence, absconds with my positivity and may actually be pushing my farther into a depression.

The feeling that if I’m not writing something new I’m doing this wrong has permeated my brain since I wrote my first book over ten years ago.

But it hasn’t changed. I continue to feel like something new has to come out of my brain or I’m failing at this writing thing, which is what some people have described it as.

My wife has told me that I need to work for myself. Not for what she expects of me and certainly not what other family members expect.

That last part is another issue which I’ve been dealing with, but won’t get into.

The writing usually makes me feel good. It gives me that needed energy boost, which is why I fall into a depression when I’m not actively writing.

I have over 50 short stories to edit, two novels, but it never feels right when I’m editing. It always feel different.

Let me explain:

Writing isn’t something that I do just for shits and giggles. I’m working to improve daily, but reading fiction, reading books on writing, and my attempting to edit.

But it never feels like other things.

When I quit drinking last fall I buried myself in working out. It was an outlet that I’d always used to cope. It’s always there in the periphery. But I’ve never thrown myself into my writing the way I do with exercise and I don’t understand why.

I can throw myself into a video game, exercise, alcohol, but when it comes to writing, I’ve not been able to accomplish such a thing and its maddening.

I don’t understand why my brain won’t do that.

Maybe it’s fear, possibly its the fear that if I write something really good I won’t be able to deal with the pressure that would come with it. This is a fear I have.

I’m also aware that I have my wife and kids and they’ve been my rock when the landscape is barren.

That my wife and kids are her with me and they back me regardless helps me get through the rough patches, though the patches have been continents lately.

Now I will undertake what I felt was impossible. I will put the effort of other efforts into writing because I can’t live in fear of this anymore.

Some things have to be conquered by straight of grit and determination. The fear that I have for writing and failing is causing me to descend into a depression that could sink me.

I will put forth and effort in my writing which I’m afraid to. I will commit to writing, editing, and improving in whatever way is possible and I will do it to the utmost of my ability as a writer and human.

So I’m stuck…

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There’s this magical art of writing things that I’m able to do most of the time.

I create stories out of thin air. Launch demons and ghouls into the world.

Today has not been one of those days.

I’m stuck.

Not in a “I have no idea what I’m doing” kind of way but more in a “I lost my story and don’t know how to get back to it” kind of way.

Taking a few days off to recover from bartending Sundance events destroyed my train of thought and where the story was going.

I had a lot of fun writing what is written, and I’ve got back and read it. But I have no idea where it was headed. I have notes, outlines and all of that but it doesn’t matter when the story takes over your brain.

You’re at the whim of muse, and she doesn’t like to be teased. She wants consistency. She wants reliability. Most of all she wants her pound of flesh on the page. When she doesn’t get it, she hides. She runs away and fucking hides.

Now, I have no idea where she went. If I did I’d ask her why she left. But today, I need her. I need all that she is. It’s a joint effort and without her on my shoulder the words don’t come and I’m unable to get things done.

I get looks when I don’t write. I need her back. I may set out something for her. A bribe.

But I’m stuck and she won’t come around right now.

Back into it

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Last week was Sundance and I worked my ass off.

Late shifts and tired mornings caused my writing to falter. I was too tired to work.

My last event was Saturday night and I returned home at 4:30 in the morning. I spent most of that day in bed, as well as a lot of yesterday as well.

One thing I learned from last week is that I need to get in better shape. Doing floor after floor of stairs in one particular venue was rough. My knees paid the price for that event.

There were other things I learned, but most of all I understand I must write, but I also must take care of myself. That goes for mentally and physically.

I haven’t worked out in the last few months because of depression and that’s why I started drinking again. Alcohol is the best thing for me when I want to abandon the world and say fuck it.

It is a long road back from that depression and I apparently worried a few people over it.

Today I’m taking a break for myself, going to the movies and pondering the next phase. But I’m thinking more clearly and more introspective of my work and thought processes.

I’m thinking a lot the last few days about how hard I work and whether its hard enough to achieve my goals.

Whether I publish or not this year is in my hands, and though I have a queries out with agents and short stories out with magazines, I’ll continue working. There is not stop except the peak of one mountain. After that peak, there’s always another mountain to climb.

I will continue to take a break when needed, but today I’m going to think about where life is going and what I’m doing.

Have a good day and I’ll post something tomorrow.

Much love.

Taking the blue pill(placebo).

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I’ve had thoughts about a great many things this week, as is evident by this week’s output.

The main point that been floating in my brain is about how I’ve distorted the functions within.

How I deal with doubt, crisis, pain, loss, and what those emotions emit to the outside world.

That I have quit drinking isn’t the big thing, but that I have is a godsend to my writing and the interior functions between my ears.

I’m learning to trust myself in a way that I haven’t done before.

I’m trusting the writing process in ways I never have. This is had all led to a new perspective on my drinking.

Life as we know it is filled with all manner of decisions. Some we undertake willingly, others not so much.

But in undertaking these things we try to dull our senses. We do this so we don’t feel the pain.

We take our drugs, our alcohol or what have you and use it as a dulling agent.

But it’s only taking a placebo to the true problem. We choose not to deal with it because it’s too hard.

It’s ourselves that we don’t want to talk to. It’s ourselves that are the problem.

We have one choice, enter the real world or escape as we’ve always done.

Working through things.

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When you’re working through things it’s hard to get peace of mind.

I see it happening as I struggle to maintain sobriety this week.

It’s Sundance in Utah and as a bartender by trade I work it because it’s good money and fun.

Though when it comes to alcohol I’m on the program. It doesn’t interfere with my bartending but I do still want a drink.

I’m hoping that I won’t be doing this in a year. I want to be writing and get paid for it.

It won’t take much for that to happen. I only need to make a certain amount for my life to function properly.

But this week is difficult.

I went sober from July until October but this time feels different.

Then I focused on working out. This time my focus is distorted.

This time I’ll be throwing everything into writing, where it should’ve been.

I haven’t reached that moment but it’s coming.

There’s more to this but some things I need to keep close.

The Revelations…

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Each day I wake up, have my coffee, get my words done and read.

Some of those days are filled with swapping between writing and doing the outline for the project.

I’ll see the end point of the story, sometimes. But while I’m writing I’ve always had a notebook close by. It’s how I work and it works for me.

There are other days when I just write. I’ll make notes on characters, their issues, what’s going on in their heads, but those days are creating days.

They are the heavy lifting days.

As I’ve grown as a writer I continue to grow outside of the writing desk.

It feels weird to say it but quitting has been at the forefront of my mind lately.

It’s something that when I have those heavy lifting days occurs to me.

They are the work days. The hard ones where the words come slow and the coffee never hits the spot.

But I know I’ll keep writing as surely as I know I’ll continue to have depression issues for the rest of my life. I’m working through those.

It’s the writing and reading that give me peace. It’s the reading that gives me guidance when I have none.

The world comes at me harder than it seems to those outside my head. They oftentimes don’t understand but it does.

I’ll keep writing because I feel it’s the only thing I’m truly good at. When I stop for any length of time, my mind doesn’t work properly.

I know it’s rough and I know I’m getting better and that’s all that matters to me.

I write for me now, though I do throw a few bones to people in my writing.

For the most part I write what scares me, what troubles me.

Writing is difficult but as with anything else, the effort shows the results and I’ve been putting a lot of effort into stories.

I hope you’re having a good day and I’ll talk about something(not sure what) on Wednesday.

Coming to terms with addiction and finding my way.

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As I said on Wednesday, a game took away from my writing time.

Oddly enough, this initially happened when I went sober the end of July.

I swapped one addiction for another.

Instead of blinding myself with alcohol, I shut the world off and buried myself in leveling a character online.

This led me to taking up the bottle again the end of October.

I did this for many reasons but mainly because I have always needed to bury my emotions.

It’s been that way for as long as I can remember.

As a teenager, I would keep to myself, not wanting to let the world know how depressed I was. That led to issues with relationships in high school.

I wasn’t mature enough to handle a relationship with myself, much less another person.

Thankfully, as I got older, met my wife, who has kept me safe from my worst tendencies, I was able to understand a few of those things.

But there was always something to subvert, numb, or chasten myself with.

It was either drowning myself in a bottle, burying myself in the pages of a book, delving into online games. In my blindness to these things I kept myself safe from pain.

I was obliterated at times because of family problems.

The bottle has been there since my late teens.

The feeling that one thing gave me led me to run off the tracks and nearly destroyed my marriage.

I try to keep myself safe and I have a tendency to bury myself in things that aren’t as good for me as I would like them to be; the bottle, video games, and other distractions.

I feel it’s necessary to bury myself in one thing that will help me get through all of this. My writing.

Writing gives me a similar high as alcohol, without the side effects.

I have this tendency to latch onto something and it can control and affect my entire world.

I’ve chosen to latch onto my writing and work it for all I can.

I’m sober again and though I’ve fallen I got myself back up.

I pick up the pieces and find new things daily. This journey will lead me to better places and better states of mind. Both of which are needed.

I’ll do my best to write for myself and will continue to write this blog.

The words are important and the message is as well.

I hope you’ll continue to read, continue to follow me on other platforms, but this is where I intend to spend my time.

I have Twitter and Instagram, but I’d rather use this blog. It gives me a bigger space and on days like today I need that.