Getting out of my Box.

My first blog post!

Hello all! I have a little space here on my website and I felt it was a criminal shame to just let it waste away. So I’m going to attempt to do a weekly post on my life as a writer and my life in general. Not to worry, I promise not to bog you all down with billions of cat pictures.

… Although my cats are cute.

Very cute.

As a lot of you already know, I am brand new to this whole writing thing. Well, not shiny new. I’ve written before. In high school I would round robin stories in hand written journals with friends.  I always had a note-book handy in college just in case an idea struck or else the characters in my head would consume my entire day. I took writing courses, wrote tons of novels that may never see the light of day, and composed one heck of a thesis for my master’s degree. Online, I role played on various games, typing with other folks who loved escaping into a fantasy world for a few hours. So yeah, I wrote often. Only I never called myself a writer.

I do too many other things and trust me when I say TOO MANY OTHER THINGS. I draw, I sew, I craft, I sing, I costume. The list goes on and on. I should have a business card that says Jack of all trades, master of none. My sister prefers to call me a “true artist.” I feel “short attention span” is more accurate. When introduced to other folks it was usually along the lines of “Oh this is Cindy. She’s an artist,” or “She makes costumes”. Writer was never a moniker I used. My identity became so wrapped up in those other words that I never thought I could or should do anything else.

When I wanted to go into writing, I was convinced that it wouldn’t stick. That the people who knew me would shake their heads and say “No. You belong here,” and shove me back into the box that I had built. So I shied away and wrote for myself, wrote for my friends, mostly myself, though. Either that or I ignored the urge to write and tried to channel that energy into what I was supposed to do; draw, sew, and be funny. 

What was going on in my head, by the way, was total bullshit. I created this voice that said “You need to stick with what you know. You’ll fail, otherwise. Those things alone are who you are.” Typing it out, it sounds so silly. I am me. What I do doesn’t define me though it does tap into my personality. But at the time, I didn’t think that. I was my job. I was my “art”. It wasn’t until after a few encouraging words from a writer I admire and a lot of soul-searching that I went for it. I wrote my first book, Siren’s Song, and actually showed it to people. I published it two years later.

And you know what? No one told me I had to stop. No one told me to go back into my box. No one pointed fingers at me and screamed “Impostor! You don’t belong here!”. The out pouring of support from my friends, family, and other writers was and still is overwhelming and that brings me an enormous amount of joy. Writing just became another facet of me, not a replacement for all the other things I loved doing.

So if you’re thinking like I once did, stop and just go for your passion. It’s not easy and you won’t instantly master it, but you will have done it. Even if you don’t get an overflow of support, there are others out there like you who will bond with you on your journey. We only have a short time on this planet so if anything, you can at least throw your arms up and say ‘Well, I tried!” which is actually a lot more than most people can say.

Hell, if I can do it, so can you.

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