Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Thoughts. And Then Some.

I didn't get along with yesterday. I'm not sure what my problem was, but my mood was something to be desired. Even more than usual.

I'm rather busy this week. A lot going on and a lot of responsibility. Packed schedules aggravate my anxiety, as do upcoming events involving large crowds and the need to socialize with humans. Since I'm in a friend's wedding this weekend, I don't foresee my mood changing prior to Sunday morning.

Draft three is coming together. I met my goal for May and got through the first twelve chapters. June will be more challenging; I have more on the calendar and less blocks of free-time. But I'm determined to reach my benchmarks, and I'm determined to meet my deadline. It's possible that a woman gave birth four times since I started this book. Four separate times, to be clear.

I saw my family this weekend. Twenty of us gathered in Brooklyn to honor my grandfather's life. I saw a lot of them in July, when we celebrated my grandfather turning 100. But others I hadn't seen in fifteen years. The afternoon was enjoyable despite sad circumstances.

This morning I felt hungover - not in the way one normally feels hungover, but in the way one wakes up sedated by the mood of yesterday. I enjoy the members of my family - both immediate and extended. And though I don't see the extended members often, I value our time together - which is usually around long tables, listening to the elders share stories of the past. In a fantasy world, I would go back in time and spend a week with them growing up - a time when an entire extended family lived on one block. A time when you walked upstairs to see your aunt and uncle, or across the street to see your grandparents. A time when Sundays were for family feasts, and running away meant never leaving your street.

My family inspires me. They were the first to model hard work and sacrifice. They were also the first to encourage me to dream. Twenty-eight years later, they still want me dreaming.

This get together refilled my leaking motivation. Writing was starting to feel like a chore; I was losing my sense of purpose and what I hoped to accomplish. My fear of failure became deafening - I know nothing is guaranteed, and that finishing this manuscript will bring me face-to-face with many, many rejections. But that can't be my focus. It's toxic to the creative process.

Sunday gave me a good kick in the stamina. I was surrounded by people taught to take risks. People who understand focus and commitment. People willing to take chances when necessary. And people who modeled these behaviors for me. They grew up rooting for each other. Now, they root for me.


  1. I love the thoughts about your family. And that they keep rooting for you. For that alone you are blessed.

  2. Family is great inspiration. I don't know what I would do without mine.
    I know the feeling of failure, but as hard as it is, you must keep going. Pick yourself up and keep pushing forward. You are doing what you want and you must push through the tall wall of scary and take charge. It is great to have others rooting for you. I am. Go Paul!

  3. How blessed you are with a wonderful family! I'm glad you recognize and appreciate them. They'll be there for those rejections and the first to celebrate the wins!

  4. Family is tough for me. The good ones are wonderful support and inspiration, but there are some bad seeds in there too. Grrr ...

  5. Yesterday was a very similar day for me, Paul. No reason in particular, but Monday and I didn't jive. I'm not one to usually dread the start of a work week, but this week started off on the wrong foot.

    I appreciate your thoughts on family. They're the one constant in my life as well that I can always count on. For me, it's more immediate family, but the image of an entire family living on one block definitely brought a smile to my face. Thank you for that.

    You've got a lot of talent my friend, and you're right; no matter what you do, no matter how committed you are, and no matter what level of incredible product you deliver, their will be people who reject it. The good news is, I have faith that there will be far more people who embrace it. I know I for one am looking forward to reading your work.

    You're discipline is something many aspiring authors lack. With that, and a never say quit attitude, you'll go far my friend.

  6. I think it's great that you have so many very supportive people in your life. I hope your mood brightens despite the anxiety of having to be in many social situations.

  7. I can relate to having days like that. I think we all have. In fact I'm trying to stay motivated to write right now.


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