The Incredible Shrinking Courage

"Life shrinks and expands in proportion to one’s courage." ~ Anais Nin

 To add another quote:

"Dreaming is easy. Making it come true is hard." ~ Me

My courage with regard to writing and seeking publication is waning, to the point I’m near paralyzed.

What is this fear?

I know how close I am to achieving my dream of a published novel. After eight years of working and dreaming, can I handle its end? Can I let it go and jump to a different one? Am I now so inflexible I am unable to embrace change?

It’s not the fear of failure, but of success that leaves me breathless. It’s the end of a dream, like the burning of a thread-bare blanket that’s kept me warm and safe for so long. Although I know it’s necessary, I’m left feeling exposed in a dark, dreary world with no sense of direction.

I don’t want this dream to end, so I hold on to this imperfect, incomplete manuscript as long as I can.

At the same time, I defy God’s will. He didn’t push me to learn the craft of writing, urge me to write the stories burning in my mind and encourage me to keep going when I longed to give up so I can screech to a halt so close to the finish.

There are other dreams to dream, he tells me, other goals to accomplish. This journey may end, but another one is waiting for me around the bend.

Other fears with regard to publishing poke at me. There’s still no guarantee it will ever be published, it could flop to the point the publisher will wave a hearty goodbye, or it could succeed beyond my expectations. Will I be able to market it the way it should, will I be able to keep readers happy with the subsequent books, and will I be able to conceive of other books beyond those currently in my head?

So many questions, and no answers.

Only by completing this final task of editing and submitting it to publishers will I find those answers.

I need not allow my fears to overwhelm me, but push forward in spite of them. I must grab hold of 1 Timothy 1:7 "For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

Tough my book may fail, I cannot not fail God, because I did what he asked. Everything else will happen exactly as it should.

2 thoughts on “The Incredible Shrinking Courage

  1. Publishing can seem like the all-important goal but there are a million ways to get published these days, including and smaller presses that are springing up everywhere. I firmly believe that anyone who truly wants to be published bad enough, who works hard enough, can be published in some form. The marketing and distribution may be more difficult with a small press, but so what! It’s a beginning! : )


  2. Very true, Alexander!
    Sometimes I wonder if we have too many options, because it can be overwhelming.
    Then again, too many options is better than not enough.
    Thanks for stopping by and sharing your wisdom!


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