Create & Let Go

“A typewriter and a lamp sitting on a desk Bowen Island” by Alexa Mazzarello on Unsplash

I write. A lot. Most of what I’ve written hasn’t been published — not in journals, not online, not even on my own blog. Sometimes it’s because the work isn’t that great, or needs to be polished and who has time for that when there are newer, fresher ideas to bring to life? And then there are some I just can’t let go.

They’re the poems and stories and essays that are fine. They read well enough. I went over them with a fine eye. Rewrite. Edit. Rewrite. It’s good, ready to go. It’s not perfect but I am not unhappy or unsatisfied with my effort.

But it can be perfect, I think to myself. Give it one more go over. And that one time blossoms into dozens of times and then I just have multiple save files of the same manuscript sitting collecting electronic dust on my computer. No one sees it but me, and by then I’m already sick of looking at.

I know what’s keeping me back. Fear. Fear of how it’ll be received; fear of it being ignored, unloved and unread. That fear drives me to strive for perfection, which leads to inaction. Fear’s progression paralyzes me.

I’m going to break this cycle. It won’t be immediate. I don’t even have a solid concrete plan on how to go about doing this. I do know that I will write, that I will create, that I will nurture my words for as long as they need my attention — and then I will let them go.

I can’t control how people respond to my writing. I can’t foresee any stats or whatnot. What I do know is that the only surefire way no one will read my writing is if I don’t publish it; my fear birthing itself. But that’s over.