A complicated relationship

My relationship with writing has always been complicated, and I think that the problem is my fear of commitment. I make promises and write a thousand words here or there, patting myself on the shoulder and calling it a day, a week, a month. I feel uncomfortable calling myself a “writer” because I think you have to actually write things to earn that title.

My fear of failure is probably the main reason behind my unwillingness to get serious with writing. If I don’t do it, I can’t do it badly, right? If I don’t commit, I can’t get hurt. But now, halfway through a degree in professional writing and literary studies, it’s well past time to lower my defenses. Honestly, this attitude toward my own writing is tiring and, quite frankly, boring.

Despite my anxieties, I really do love writing. And after a bit of faffing about — a line or two scrawled in a notebook and a few late nights spent hammering out half-formed stories and essays — I’ve decided to force myself to throw some of my work out into the wild world web, and hopefully use self-imposed deadlines to force myself into writing something every week.

I mostly write about my efforts to lengthen my baby steps through life into the strides of a bona fide adult, something I hope (I seriously hope) that other equally imperfect young people can relate to. I also make attempts at fiction, usually short stories because I am easily distracted and tend to grow to dislike my ideas just a few thousand words into them, but occasionally I write fragments that I hope will someday develop into something more fully formed. As my mum always said, practice makes better (because there’s no such thing as perfect), so practice I will.

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