Wednesday, 3 August 2011

enter job--exit ego

With this move to New Zealand there have been many unearthed treasures.  Sitting on my bed typing while looking out at the ocean harbor and Mount Manaia- one of the most sacred Maori spots in NZ- is nothing less than a miracle.

One of the most profound gifts has been the opportunity to pursue the life of a writer full time.  It is a bit of an experiment because I found when I was writing as an assignment for other publications there was always the ominous ego involved.  What will they think of the piece?  Is it good enough?  If I only had time for myself I could really do something with my writing.

Blame maturity or realism or the simple passion of creating but the process of writing and finishing my book has been the most ego-less writing I have ever undertaken.  While I heard other authors speaking of writing for the market and the pressure that added to their writing, I couldn't relate.  I was driven to write this book and I wanted to write if for myself and stay engaged with where the characters and story were leading me; I did not write with a goal of publication.

Enter ego.

After waking up several mornings to enthusiastic, praise infused emails from my critiquing readers of the "finished" novel I swelled with positive energy.  Do something with it . . . put it out there they tell me. (in reality, i felt as i had won the lottery just hearing that my characters and story had moved folks so and could now die happy)

When you contemplate the process of sending a novel out to an audience known for rampant rejection it is inevitable that ego will rear its persistent head (and rambling inner voice, as if I don't obsess enough already).

What to do?  Summon the energy and action to counteract ego:

  • I am not waiting for the acceptance of an outside entity to validate that I am an author. 
  • I am going to live the life of an author (more on what that means later)
  • If I get nothing more than the reaction of people I choose to share my book with, I'm down with that.
  • When ego enters and I have concern about finding an outside entity to represent me or "like" me I will turn that focus into my job as a writer.

It is an experiment of sorts.  I got my dream job.  Now, what do I do with it?

Stay tuned.

And if you are working on integrating more writing into your life please let me know how that is going.

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