Befriend your demons.
October 7, 2016
The truth is that any demon honestly met becomes a friend, and our friends should be treated wisely if we wish them to remain our friends. Rolf Gates, Meditations from the Mat
Today, my demon-friend self-doubt and I are going to work on our book. Our seven-years-in-the-making, convoluted and complex sprawl of a book. In spite of ranking 33rd in a contest of hundreds, the demon of self-doubt tells me, “33rd? There were 32 novels better than yours? You’re never going to find anyone who wants to read your crap.”
Getting widely disparate feedback from readers. A pretty hard week at work. A close friend making extensive snark at the concept of purgatory, which figures prominently in the section I am currently revising. The demon of self-doubt tells me, “nobody is going to understand this and they are just going to dismiss it as ridiculous dogma.”
Feeling like I would rather do anything but sit down in front of this computer and work on this thing: there’s yoga at 10:30. Costco needs me or they might go out of business. Maybe I should take a walk. My car could use washing. I should put away my laundry. Longmire! New Harry Potter book!
So how do I treat my demon-friend wisely when all he does is poke at me and tell me that I am wasting my time, that I could be doing something worthwhile and enjoyable like, oh, I don’t know, changing the catbox?
All I know to do is to treat him the same way I have to treat all of my demons (and some of my friends): I listen to what they have to say, try not to take it personally, try not to get frustrated, focus on the good in them, love them.In spite of the demons and everything, everything: I sit down and write. One. Word. At. A. Time.