Back to the hole, back to work. The week lay ahead, and there are plenty of things to do.
But first, lying in bed, in the darkness. And enjoying it. Yes, I was. It was something I was told to do; if I wake up, and it’s dark, and I’m not sleeping, just lay there in bed and relax. Don’t get up; don’t start making coffee; don’t start writing.
It was one of those half-awake, half-asleep moments I used to have a lot last year, but haven’t had a lot of this year. 2012 has been the year when a lot of things have changed for me, and that was one of them. I used to love those moments when I’d be in a state of slumber, somewhat aware of what was happening around me, but never certain if what I was seeing and feeling was real, or a dream.
It was like that this morning. I could sense things happening, I could hear things being said, but I’m not sure if I was thinking it, or dreaming it.
Maybe it was Cassidy speaking to me, since she seems to be with me a lot these days. Maybe it was my Muse, who is also always with me, even when I don’t see her there next to me. But whomever it was, the message was the same:
Remember Jim Butcher.
Allow me to explain:
A while back, Jim–whom some of you might recognize as the author of The Dresden Files series–wrote a blog post where he said, “If your dream is to be a writer, and you stop writing, you only have yourself to blame. Only you can kill your dream.”
Which is right on. No one else is going to take your dreams away from you. Not your parents; not your siblings; your significant other; not your friends; not you cat–okay, maybe the cat. If you throw up your hands and go, “Fuck it, I’m not getting anywhere with this, I’m going to chuck it,” then you have killed what you wanted. You killed your dreams, and there’s no way you can point fingers at anyone else, because you know what “they” say about pointing fingers . . .
Yesterday I made a comment to someone that I was starting to feel as if I wasn’t getting anywhere, that it seemed like I was doing a hell of a lot of writing, but getting very little in return. I’m not talking money here: I’m talking about response. It was getting me down just a little.
But the person I was speaking to said, “Don’t feel like that. You’re one of my inspirations.”
Something like that stays with you, and it has, even to this morning.
Giving up is very easy; millions of people do it every day. Being creative is hard; everyone who’s ever sat down with the intention of creating something, be it a painting, a story, a play, a movie, has found it to be something of a solitary affair. You work in a vacuum, and never know if your effort is going to produce something that will make you proud, or make you want to put a bag over your head.
But you create because you want to do so. You want to make something. You want to live your dreams.
Do it. Don’t stop. Push on forward, and keep going. Because the opposite is also true: the only one who can keep your dreams alive are you.
Okay, maybe the cat can help . . .