In looking back over my past posts, I was reminded of one of my first, Sailing Through Fog: How Writers Can Chart Toward an Unseen Horizon. Yet again, I find myself in unfamiliar waters, navigating a new job and figuring out a new normal.
|Fog Photo by Psytrom, courtesy of Photobucket|
You'd think, two years after that post, I would have figured out all the bumps by now. But that's not how it works. You dodge a rock you think is there, only to run into a completely new rock on the other side. Then you have to re-chart again, because the reality you perceived wasn't there at all, and your certainty is dragged from your center until it becomes a delusion.
So you get knocked out of the boat maybe, and once you get back in, you're cold, wet, and irritated. But if you're in the right state of mind, you can start to see the new pattern so clearly that it turns into one that's familiar, and slowly, surely, you can sail forward again.
It's something we face time again, in writing, and outside of it. Something you tried didn't turn out the way you planned. Perhaps a book you wrote went off in a completely unexpected direction. Or your query flopped. Or a publishing relationship inexplicably went south. Or a marketing strategy you put a lot of work into tanked, and you're still not sure why.
All of these have one aspect in common: they all represent trials we have to go through in order to fully understand what we need to learn from them. And with that understanding, we're armed with a oar to do it better next time.
Sometimes we have to go through the same thing a lot of times before it finally registers. And that's okay. Even new mistakes are okay--because in them we can see where we've improved, what we've overcome, and what else we can learn.
So I leave all you wonderful readers in the hopes that you'll find as many new paths as possible, and when the river gets bumpy, remember we're are all sailing through this together, toward that unseen, misty horizon.
I'll let the Shakira song from the new Zootopia movie finalize my point: