Thoughts, problems, worries. I have them all, but I also have hope, excitement, faith. My problem is, how do I allow the most productive of these emotions to dominate at any given moment? I mean, if I need to be productive how do I make myself be productive?
I have a lot of dreams. My problem is that I lack confidence in myself to fulfil those dreams. One of my biggest dreams, one that I’ve held for most of my life now, is to be a writer. In the early days I used to write short stories. My guess now is that most of them were probably terrible. They would have been written in that unique language that a pre-teen uses. Even then I tended to keep most of my stories private. I wrote long-hand in an old exercise book; the home computer hadn’t been invented yet. I never really saved any of them and that is a huge regret of mine. I make a point of trying to keep all my documents nowadays and that is a lot easier to achieve now that 90% of my writing is done on a computer or my phone and saved to my dropbox account. However, I still crave the innocent old days of curling up in my bedroom with a notepad and a biro, none of this worrying about the time or thinking that I should be doing something more constructive with it. I could then write away to my heart’s content. Who knows? Something useable might even come from it.
So, here I am, typing away at this word document. I know there are loads of other things I should be doing right now from trying to write copy that someone might want to pay me for to fixing up the house and the dozens of diy jobs that need doing but, for my own sanity, I have to call a time out on all this noise. It is at times like this that I retreat to my little log cabin at the bottom of my garden. This is my sanctuary from the world. Here I have all my books, my computers and it is here that I find I can be creative.
I am what they call a “late bloomer”. That is, I am beginning to develop my creativity quite late in life compared to others. I am in my mid 50’s now. I have reached a time in my life where I don’t need to be chasing around for every hour of available overtime to pay the bills. The bills are still a struggle, I’m not as wealthy as I would like myself to be at my age. I know I will still have to go out to my job for the foreseeable future and I don’t have any life savings. But I am finding that I am able to give myself an ever-increasing amount of free time. Often, I spend this free- time on interests that might never earn me money. I am still trying to create what people call a “weekend income”, how successful I will be with this we still have to find out.
The two ideas that seem to be sticking with me are my Voice-overs. I will write more about this subject in future posts, and my writing. I have been circling around these ideas for what feels like an eternity now and I keep coming up against the same obstacles. I know these are self-imposed obstacles but they are holding me back.
The biggest obstacle is that of confidence. Is my writing good enough? I read other people’s writing and compare mine to it and, to be honest, mine always sounds like a 5 year old has written it. I know that what I’m reading from other writers is their polished, final draft and my own writing is often my first, rough draft but very often I think to myself that I may as well quit while I can. This is a common problem with writers and one that I know I will work through using some of the course materials I still have from an old writing course I abandoned years ago.
I also know that the simplest solution is to keep writing. To this end, I have started a private journal on my phone where I write rubbish. Many musicians compose their best works from extended jamming sessions where they spend hours just noodling around playing chords and phrases on their guitars or whatever. Perhaps I should do the same with my writing? Just write randomly, with no agenda or topic in mind and see what comes out? Maybe somewhere in the middle of all that waffle there might be the little nugget or spark of an idea that might develop into a full story or article? This is something I want to experiment with.
From an adult, constructive point of view I think I should re-start that writer’s bureau course I abandoned some years ago. I think that course will teach me the practical skills I need in order to become a published writer. I can then couple that with my journal writing and, hopefully, out of the other end will fall a professional writer.
So, that’s the way forward for me this year. It is time for me to find my creativity that I abandoned when I left my childhood and marry it with the practical skills I have learned as an adult. Who knows, maybe I will become a true “late-bloomer”?
Do you know any “Late bloomers”? Are you one? Is this even a table that people use? if you know please leave a comment below.