"Dear Me." A conversation with myself. I have to answer. (2nd Place winner.)
Written for and winner of 2nd Place in the 2009
"I know it's early in the day, but I need to get these goals written down. This year I want to.... Oh no, now you've done it," I said, peeved at the interruption.
"You've brought up that thought again," I replied, accusingly. "What's worse is you've really thought about it. What were you ... er, thinking?"
Of course I did. You didn't think I could let it go, did you? You started it, this 'time for a change' stuff. You know it has to be this way.
"Well, I'm...." confused? I'd never really contemplated such violence before. Have you ever thought about killing something?
I know we've all considered it at one time or another. Something made us so angry that we contemplated murder, if only for that split second. But we're basically good, you and I. Such a thought passes on to oblivion almost as fast as it rears its ugly head. We're human. And as strong as we like to think we are, we have little control over the thoughts that pop into our heads.
I have control over what I think. More than that, I have control over what I do.
"How can you say that?" I responded, irritable because of my past languid actions. "We're weak. We live from day to day reacting to all the stimuli that constantly bombards us. We're not a proactive species."
Baby, we are what we make of ourselves. Damn, I'm fifty-four years old. It's time to stand up for myself. Take charge. Stop paying attention to what everyone else thinks. It's time for ... ME!
"What are you going to do?" I felt the apprehension growing inside me. A thought struck me--maybe it's not apprehension. It was more like ... determination.
"Oh my God! It is!"
Murder! Say it! Murrr-derr.
"No, I can't."
You can ... and you will. You know as well as I that we'll never fulfill our writing desires as long as they're around. They have to go.
"I-I know." I'm weakening, and I'm ashamed because I know it has to be this way.
This is our year, you know ... 2009. I heard someone once say that goals must be clearly stated, achievable and written out so they remain foremost in our sight. And we both know what our writing goals are, don't we?
"Yes." Now I feel my excitement growing. I know what my goals are. I know that I can achieve them this year. And I know these goals will only be met with the demise of two things--my fears of inadequacy, and an overwhelming sense that friends and family wouldn't understand or approve of my desire to write.
The strange thing is my writing goals figure prominently in my overall personal goals for this coming year. Over the past several months, they've morphed into a strong desire to write for a living. Now that is a dream worth pursuing.
I'd joined Writing.com for one reason--to develop my writing into something of which I could be proud. Since last May, I've done that. I've written stories that have been well accepted by this writing community, and I've been recognized personally as a Preferred Author. And what now?
Indeed. Say 'em. Say our goals out loud!
Starting softly, I recited, "One, to suffocate my feelings of inadequacy in my writing through three means: To grow artistically by writing and finishing at least two short stories each month; to flatter my ego and keep my writing fresh by entering at least one contest each month; and to improve technically by reading other's works and writing no fewer than 1250 additional reviews before the end of this year." Yes, that was great to hear. I could feel the relief washing over me.
Continue, please. You're not finished.
"Two," I said, warming to the task, "to slay this overwhelming sense that others wouldn't approve or understand my need to write by three things: To prepare and submit four items for publication, and receive payment for one of them before the end of this year; to identify those groups on WDC to which I can become a real asset, and follow through with a commitment to them; and finally, to take back control over my life from those who would steal my dream, to recognize my true self-worth, to become a writer!"
Now, doesn't that feel g....
"Wait, wait! I have more." I was caught up in my enthusiasm; I was excited and had to shout it to everyone. "I'm a writer! And I'm good enough to succeed."
I stopped, smiling sheepishly. I thought of all the other goals running through my mind--actually completing the novel I began in NaNoWriMo 2008, organizing and running a successful contest, running my own auction, finding a writing buddy, and making more close friends on WDC.
"I guess those things will happen if I follow through on my stated goals."
Oh, they will. And probably much more.
Looking up from my desk at the sun barely peeking above the horizon, I smiled again, and thought, "I'm a pretty smart guy."
Yes, you are. Now print this out!
Word count: 859