Sunday, 31 August 2014

self doubt and Sunday's

One of the most debilitating things for any creative person is self doubt. There are any number of memes depicting the cyclic nature of perceived worth for any work, be it writing, music, or art in any form. I am no different from hundreds of thousands of other creatives who doubt themselves and their ability to create something worthwhile.

If I tally up the things I have done over the past year and a half I know I have produced an astounding number of words strung together as stories and an incredible amount of art. When I am listening rationally to the comments from others I can hear them say how much they like my work or how much they like my art but still I am more convinced by the negatives than the positives. I focus on my growing pile of rejections and my growing pile of failures in competitions. Rational me says that I need to research the judges and see what they like and not submit a story and hope it will win on its merits not the subjective likes of a judge. The rational me doesn't get a fair hearing.

I finally officially sent in an "I'm not coming back" letter to my former employer and they advertised my job within hours. I am relieved and scared at the same time. I need to make my writing and art an income generating activity but no one pays for anthology pieces, at least no one who will take my stories which brings me full circle into the belief that my work is only good enough for small press and vanity publishers who have no money to pay anyone (Or say they haven't). All the big publishers I have subbed to have either rejected me or not even known I subbed.

I sent one story to 12 people who offered to beta read for me and only two responded. Even my beta readers are rejecting me. So I am spiraling back to maybe I should quit this gig and go get a job cleaning toilets with my stories.

I ran out of money ages ago and I don't have a 'real job' to go back to. 

So before I sink into some quagmire of depressing thoughts I will share a bit of art for this week's 52 week challenge. Theme: Paris.
 I have never been, only seen, Paris through the lens. 
One day I'll go and see the show that poets scribe and then I'll know.
The first image was painted with water colours but I was not particularly happy with the soft pastel hues so I re-coloured with pencil next day. The image was in part inspired by the poster below and various images of the bridges over the Seine. I do love the lamp posts and hope some day to see them for myself. I am planning on one more image for the week of Coco Chanel.

My new garden plants are all sprouting leaves and the bulbs are up and flowering. I have never been an enthusiastic gardener and I am quite pleased when things actually grow well. My mother was an enthusiastic gardener, so enthusiastic she knew the common and scientific names of everything in her garden plus all the medical, cosmetic and edible properties of each and every leaf, stem, bulb and flower. Her talents were wasted, she should have been running the horticulture classes at a university somewhere. She loved plants so much that my sister wrote a song about it. The lyrics went something like this...  Plants, plates and other people always get your love, if I were to grow a leaf maybe you would see me... she will correct me, my sister, for having her lyrics wrong but it was four decades ago. I tell people I know nothing about plants but the truth is I do, I absorbed information about plants because that was all my mother was ever interested in. I don't willingly garden and until very recent times would only put edible plants in a garden and dismissed plants for their aesthetic appeal as purely fanciful and a waste of dirt and water. My mother did not grow food. She had eight children but did not grow food?

Goodness this post is maudlin I shall try and lift my dopamine and serotonin levels somewhat. The sun is shining, that should help or at least fill me with some vitamin D.

 My daughter is off to her second master class for acting today. She seems both terrified and enthusiastic and I am hoping it will strengthen her skills and give her a network of contacts.
 she is doing the 5 WEEK INTENSIVE MASTERCLASS WITH ANDY McPHEE through big&small acting studio
PO BOX 5244South Melbourne, VIC,3205
Andy McPhee  actor.
She is discovering that even adults do homework but the only people who check it is themselves. She has to read an actors autobiography each week, watch and review films, write poetry and monologues,  learn scripts, listen to music and analyse it and then in class she has to act and dance and change her accent and modify the scene to fit a different genre and so much more. It is intense and she was not prepared for the expectations of an adult class after fluffing around in high school but she will adapt. This is the career path she has always shown an interest in so I am hoping by supporting her to do this she can take flight.

I have paid for two courses to improve my own skills and I need to begin studying. I sent away for a book on self publishing which should be awesome. I am excited for friends and network acquaintances who have recently published their first books and signed their first contracts or signed new contracts. It is wonderful to see the successes of people I value. It gives me some hope to push past my own self depreciation.

Perseverance is the key. Most of the well known writers in giving tips say the same thing. BIC (bottom in chair), write every day and just keep going. So I shall just keep going. I have some more art to complete today and that always cheers me up.

Have a wonderful day dear readers.
ps I love you sister of mine.
pps. sorry I stood you up for the cuppa Shirley
ppps. did you know you could have a post post post script
pppps. the word Happy is used three times more often in English than sad