Challenge Day 29: Something you hope to change about yourself. And why.
There are a few things I’m still working to change about myself, and I think we’ve already touched on the majority of those things in previous challenge posts. Still, I’ll try to answer this one as though it’s a fresh concept. The two main things I’d like to change about myself go rather hand in hand (at least in my mind) so instead of one, we’ll explore the two…
The first is my level of education; I really want to raise this bar. Every time I become interested in something I will learn all I can about it (at least while the obsession lasts) and I’ve managed to teach myself quite a few interesting little things over the years, but I’m one of those people that craves feedback. Not validation exactly, but comment, criticism and advice help to focus my attentions on things I may not even be aware of doing wrong. In order to hone my skills (with most things) I need to be able to see what I’m doing through someone else’s eyes, thus, I feel there are limitations on how far I’m capable of taking myself along the path to enlightenment.
I can’t help feeling like being a part of a class; having assignments, discussions, and someone with far greater wisdom than my own on hand to point me in the right direction; would be incredibly beneficial. At this moment in time, going back to school really isn’t a viable option for me, but no worries though… I am planning on going back soon, perhaps even this coming fall if things work out.
The second thing I’d like to change about myself – and I can’t help but feel that further education would help in this second goal – is in relation to my inner-writer…
I have been scribbling down songs, poetry and stories since I learned to write – no exaggeration – and yet, it is really only in the last couple of years that I’ve even begun to call myself a writer. I always thought giving myself that title was a little pretentious, especially since I’ve not had (or even tried to have) a thing published since my mid teens. The thing I need to change on this note is really in regards to my own insecurities; how can you ever hope to accomplish something if you never try?
Now I really don’t know if I even have the skills to turn my passion into a pay check. Perhaps the universe has played yet another prank on me by giving me more desire than talent, but until I actually try to achieve my goals in this matter, I can’t really know for sure. I hate to admit this, but part of my hesitation might be coming from the fact that if I never try, I can never fail, and thus, the hope remains alive. Oh, don’t look at me like that! I know just how ridiculous the thought is!
As I’ve pointed out (several times already), my inner-writer is a coward. Since the greater part my personality was once quite cowardly as well, I know a little bit about what it takes to get over and around fear; it’s got a lot to do with being just a little more stubborn than you are afraid, and I am nothing if not stubborn. I am working towards something, even if I’m taking all the back roads on the way to my destination point.
You guys – whether you’re aware of it or not – are one of the greatest tools I’m utilizing in an attempt to get over my insecurities about my writing. This might seem a little strange since I don’t post my real work on this blog. I am not a poet (at least not intentionally) and I’m not really a short story writer or an essayist either; I am a novelist, or more so a wannabe novelist. Still, the bits and pieces I share with you fine folks is all about baby steps; one foot in front of another will always move you forward, even if it is at a snail’s pace.
Sharing with you guys is step one, and (obviously) this is where I am right now. Step two is sharing more with the people in my really-real world; and this is something I’ve actually started doing a little more often since starting this blog, and this gives me a little more hope for my inner-writer’s abilities to adapt and grow. Step three will be sending off some of my short stories in the attempt to have them published; I’m so not there yet; and step four will rely a lot on my experience with step three, and involves an effort to find a publisher for my book(s).
There are a few other baby-baby steps I’m considering at this point in time to help make the transition between strides seem a little less daunting. I’ve been playing with the idea of doing a coffee table photo-poetry book with my sister (not the one we’ve been calling Jade, but my older half-sister; she’s a rather talented (I don’t think I’m being biased here) photographer). I almost did a project like this with an old friend of mine, but he was even more unfocused than I am. Since I don’t take my poetry very seriously, this mini-step doesn’t even seem scary, but more so interesting. I’ll let you know how the idea progresses.
Another baby-baby step I’m considering right now is working with a freelance writing company. I’m a little worried about how much time this could steal away from fiction writing (which is my passion) but at least it would mean getting paid for doing what I so much love doing; writing; and it might be a step in the right direction. Last night my girlfriend pointed out that it would be like starting in the mailroom when you’re really aiming for the executive position; it’s a start. I saw a lot of sense in what she had to say on the matter, but I’m still locked in an eternal debate about the merits/disadvantages in this course of action. Again, I’ll let you know how the idea progresses.
So yes, there are still things that I would like to change about myself, but the good news is that most of them are within in reasonable reaching distance, and I am making an effort. So long as I’m not standing still or – worse – going backwards, I am optimistic about achieving all of my goals in this life.