"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear--not absence of fear." ---Mark Twain
"Do one thing every day that scares you." ---Eleanor Roosevelt
I'm sure we've all heard quotes like this. Do what scares you. Write what scares you. I never meant to take this advice literally, but I kind of am.
I'm writing a scary story. And I haven't been able to watch anything scary/horror related in years! I couldn't go to the bathroom by myself after watching The Skeleton Key. And I barely made it through the first half of White Noise. It's all too real to me; I can't separate reality from the story. So what the bleep am I doing writing a scary story?
I secretly like creepy things. I have this morbid fascination with haunted houses and skeletons and dark things! I like stories with a creepy edge to them, I love Tim Burton's stuff, and Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. And I've always wanted to write a story like this. But it still gets to me, especially when I'm writing late at night and Hubby goes to bed before I do---ACK! I have to stay up and look at blogs or read to distract myself, otherwise I picture the ghosts and creepiness from my story (or the ghost stories I'm researching) and it keeps me from being able to close my eyes.
I'm also scared about people's reaction, because it is darker than anything I've ever written before.
Writing itself can be scary, putting your beloved ms out there on blog contests for people to tear apart your opening lines or your query letters, sending it out to agents only to get smattered with rejections. It's definitely not easy! I think success can also be a scary thing. What? I actually did something right and got an agent? Aw crap, now what? (Lol, although I hear once you have an agent it's exactly the same as what I'm trying to do now, except the agent is the one pitching your material to editors instead, and more rejections follow. But hey, that's one step closer than I am now!) And no, I don't have an agent. Yet.
All I'm saying is, sometimes it's beneficial to do what scares you. It pushes you out of your comfort zone, breaks down your muscles so you can build them up again stronger and more durable for the next time. And even though I freak myself out late at night, I'm LOVING my new story and can't wait for it to be ready! I even have interest from an agent because I entered part of it into a Spooktacular contest on my friend's blog last Halloween and the agent who was judging the entries liked my 500 word spiel! (I told her it wasn't ready yet and I'd send it when it was.)
I'm going to end with this awesome quote and a link to the article.
"The truth is that the people who live the life of their dreams take risk. And on top of that, they persist. And on top of that, they trust themselves. And on top of that circumstances don't hold them back, because they know that they are more powerful than their circumstances. And on top of that they know that it's not about how much money you have, but how much passion, willingness and dedication you have to make your dreams come true. And on top of that they know that no one defines what's true for them except them. And on top of that they know that Plan B is not an option because it's a distraction from Plan A. And on top of that they just don't give up because that's who the hell they are!
What is missing from your life? Know that it is missing because you are most likely not giving it. Bring to your life what you want from it. If you don't think the Uni-verse is helping you, try trusting yourself and taking a risk. Listen to your intuition, do what scares you...and see the miracle that awaits."
By Mastin Kipp. See the full article here.
So tell me: do you write what scares you? Do you push the boundaries on what you're comfortable with? What are your thoughts, I'd love to hear them!