Facing Fears

“Once you’ve got a task to do, it’s better to do it than live with the fear of it,” Logen Ninefingers says in The Blade Itself. I’ve mulled over those words a bit these past few days. It seems like a good mantra to live by.

I wrote something this morning that scared the hell out of me to complete. I almost didn’t finish it, but if I hadn’t the fear would’ve stayed with me. I would’ve pushed it down, as is my wont sometimes, and pretended like it didn’t exist, but sooner or later I’d feel it again. And again. So I wrote instead. And while I feel better having written – which I usually do – the ever-present challenge is that you never know what the result will be of something you write. Will it lead to something truly amazing, which will prove to be one of the highlights of your life? Or will it join the collection of other writings that sit on your harddrive, heavy with unrealized potential, and maybe even a little regret?

As I’ve mentioned a few times in my attempt at a straightforward account of what it means to be a writer – writing can be hard. It can be painful. It can be frightening. But I was reminded today that writing is better than not, no matter what direction the piece you’ve chosen takes. Doing so will hopefully make tomorrow easier, when you move on to whatever your next project will be.

So when you doubt yourself, fellow writers … just write.

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