Yes, it has been a while. I admit, as I have said before, I am not real good at this blogging thing, nor with Twitter, Facebook, MySpace... Should I go on? Nay, I digress.
This post is on fear. Some people deny having any kind of fear in their lives. Most, however, admit to at least one kind or other. But the fear I am talking of is the purely unjustified kind. Irrational. Unfounded. Phobic, even.
I, myself, have many such, but the one foremost in existence right now is " fear of rejection". Allow me to explain:
As some may already know, I have two stories in process; a Fantasy/Adventure called "Barbarian Tales" and a Science Fiction called "Challenge of The Velah". In both, I have just over 13,000 words, and most who have read them state they are quite good. Now, I do not flatter myself by saying they would be 'Best Seller' material as-is.
Problem is, I have stalled out on both of them. I know kind of where I want them to go, and popular suggestions are that the word count should total, at the very least, 50,000 words or more to achieve novel length. (Okay, there is another fear; Inadequacy) When I first learned this, I felt overwhelmed. I thought I did well getting the word count I had, and then I find I am less than one third through. Wow.
I have gotten hold of one of Robert E. Howard's "Conan" books, and through trial and error copy-and-paste, found it had some 21,000 words. Now, I realize his works were made, what, seventy-five years ago? More or less. Plus or minus. So, I am left to wonder: are times really that much different? "Well, yeah," you might say. "I mean, movies back then were maybe an hour long. The folks in today's world have the need for more information." And yet, a lot of the writing advice I see tells one to edit, condense, not over explain so as to give the reader a chance to discover some things for themselves. So, how does one get so many words and please the "writing suggestions" of those who are supposed to be helping?
Again, I digress. We're talking about fear here. What I have come to suspect is that I have subconsciously halted my writing. Perhaps my brain (yes, both brain cells, when they are not playing 'superconductor) figures that as long as the work is not finished, I will not have to submit it, therefor evading the inevitable "Sorry, we are not interested at this time" response.
I have always battled the rejection fear, and have dealt with so much rejection in my life that I should be used to it. So why the fear? I mean, no one goes through life being consistently accepted and never rejected. Everyone has been rejected at least once. (HA! At least one hundred times would be an understatement) So, again, why the fear?
I have a few short works that I have tried submitting to online magazines. I have been rejected each time. No explanation, just refused. No encouragement to revise and resubmit. I hear tell that there are some rejection notices which offer advice on what needs changed, or why the piece was rejected. This remains to be seen as far as my experiences. Yes, I understand the hundreds, even thousands of items pass through a given submission desk and there is no feasible way for all of the rejected items to be analyzed and commented on. Hopefully, one day someone will look at some of my writings and tell me exactly what I am doing wrong. Or what I can do do finally get a work accepted.
Well, I will leave you with that for now. I am still hoping to post more often, but I figure that as long as I am, apparently, the only one visiting this blog, all is for my eyes only. Looking at my stats, I have one subscriber, and two people commenting on what I put here. Kind of like my website, www.johntmherres.com for the most part only has comments from family and people I know. How I would love to see a favorable comment from someone I have never met, or asked to visit. Hell, I'd even welcome constructive criticism from a stranger. Oh, well. I guess if it is meant to be, it will happen.
Peace! Till Later; enjoy what life has to offer.