humility, part two

by Sandra

So this is kind of like a comment on my last post, but a comment that people will actually read. It’s an addendum of sorts, an after thought, a caveat, an “oh yeah, and this.”

My roommate Stephanie, who herself is a brilliant painter/photographer/baker/maker of clothes, suggested that perhaps I felt a fear of success when I was writing that first play and that’s what made me back away from it. I scoffed a little at that suggestion, saying that no, I doubt I’d have a problem if the play succeeded, and then she said, “no, I meant that along with the notion that you were writing a play that could turn into something really good, along came the fear that you would mess it up along the way and that’s what paralyzed you and made you turn away from the material” (that’s a gross paraphrase).

A-ha! Yes, that is true, this sentiment. She hit the nail on the head. I had freaked out and instead of investigating that fear, I backed away from it, turning instead to safer yet much more bland work.

I’m beginning to feel like Charlie Kaufman, so neurotic about my work and everything, but this working out of the mental blocks and perceptions and misconceptions is all part of the game. It’s part of why I signed up for this in the first place. And while coming to these realizations do not automatically produce good work, or fruit, to put it spiritually, they do provide turning points, which right now is what I’m looking for.