When I Give It Away

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I write stories. For a really long time, I wrote stories in secret – never sharing, never admitting this is what I wanted in my life. Never failing but never succeeding, either. Until one day that changed. A small part was figuring out how to share my work. The larger part came with barely a whisper. I was just ready.

I can be stubborn. No one can get me to do anything until I work my way around to it on my own. So, I can’t even cry about lost time and the “might have beens”. Mostly, those are “never would have beens” because until I’m ready, nothing happens. It is important to know yourself.

So, one day, a whisper brushed past me and I was ready. And, as much as I’d like to say that awareness brought all the answers, it didn’t. I have barely any answers still. But, I had a first step and a willing spirit to take it.

I am no success story. Not yet. I am a beginner in the first mile of a marathon. But I understand the length of the race even if the course ahead of me is a mystery.

I struggle with the unknown. I’m the type of person that needs to know the course ahead of me. I need to know when to conserve my energy and when to burst forth full speed. I want to plan it out and I can’t. I write a story and I send it out. When it is published, I have to trust that there will people to read it. No amount of annoying self promotion (and yes, I do know I’m being annoying. And, I hate it), social media or whining to family members will ever get me where I want to be. I need a magic moment, a magic reader – someone, somewhere to read the story I’ve given away. It has to happen organically. And, they have to like it enough to care. I hope they like it enough to read more.

It is an impossible – and, improbable – proposition. I push and write, push and post. I talk about it too much. I don’t attend social events – instead, sitting at home finishing a story or finding places to submit it. I check my web site statistics like a palm reader and try to divine some larger truth that will show me the way. It never does. It never will. I need a Xanax. Or, maybe an actual palm reader.

 When I give my stories away, I suffer through it. I’m anxious and hopeful. I have to find some faith that if I continue to work, to write and push, something good will happen. I have my eyes on you, magic reader. I have my eyes strained to the darkened course a head of me.

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