Well I did it.
I told you I would. I had hoped you’d forget and no one would ever bring it up again, but I said, “damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead.” Okay, I didn’t exactly say that. In fact, I am not sure that anyone actually said that in real life, but mostly likely Admiral Farragut said something like that during the Battle of Mobile Bay in 1864.
But that’s just me looking up unrelated facts to avoid thinking or writing about what I really came here to write about. All you writers out there get that.
Okay, I didn’t say, “damn the torpedoes,” but it is sort of, kind of how I felt when I did it. There are plenty of reasons not to do it – time, money, emotional trauma…
Here’s the deal, I signed up for a writer’s conference this summer and applied to a week-long writer’s workshop. The workshop is one where there is a selection process for attendees and it’s not guaranteed that I’ll be accepted. The conference is a simple matter of filling in credit card numbers and clicking on, “I agree to the terms and conditions.” I am not going to say which I signed up for now, but I’ll let you know all about them when I get home.
Honestly, it’s a bit of an experiment for me. I am a basic introvert and attending functions and things with lots of people I don’t know, is a great effort. Oh I can do it and actually have some public speaking skills (I’ll be honest, I can great job if you hand me a mic and say go), but there is a cost – it’s mentally and emotionally draining. Seriously draining. I don’t get energized in groups and it’s work to participate.
So why did I decide to go? There is a possibility that it might be good for me and my writing. Over the years of doing this blog, I’ve come to a kind of plateau and I don’t always feel like I am challenging my writing skills here. I’d like to move into other writing and sharpen my skills. There is part of me that hopes that when I finally retire from the high-tech business, that I’ll be able to find a second career as a writer.
Probably hoping for too much, but even at a personal level, I feel the need to push my abilities. I don’t feel I can do that by sitting here behind the computer and posting to this blog. I am hopeful that moving beyond my normal comfort zone of a quiet office and a cup of tea, I can find a new energy or a new path for my creative efforts.
It’s scary. It’s hard for me to take criticism of my work without falling into a depression over it and just giving up. I am not the kind of guy who likes to expose the deeper problems and emotions I have. It can be uncomfortable for me to sit in place where have to look at parts of me that I normally ignore.
So, I’ve decided on a conference where I’ll be among people trying to sell their work, listening to the speakers, and attending a few writing workshops.
The poetry workshop is a week-long affair where you work in a small group to write and help each other become better poets. I had to submit a selection of poems for that and I won’t know for sometime if I’ve been accepted. There are fears in my mind about this one – did I pick the right one? Is my writing good enough to get in? Will it really benefit me?
Many unanswered questions.
It may turn out to be disaster or it might turn out to be just thing I needed.
Mostly I don’t know, but I do know that I am mostly a pilgrim at heart and am always looking for something better.
Till next week,