It takes everything in me, some days, to lull them into a quiet hush. Somehow, I manage to tame them, persuading them to just give me today to try, just today. Skeptically, they withdraw, pulling back into the darkness of my mind where they linger, waiting to pounce again. For the moment, my thoughts become mine alone. There is a sweet stillness about my thoughts, a gentle calm clearing the way for the words to flood in. Write fearlessly. Write, fearlessly. I chant my mantra, repeating it until some part of me clings to it. Write fearlessly.
But what does it even mean to write fearlessly? Does it mean to write without doubt? Does it mean to write without the reader in mind? Does it mean to write as if to pretend no one will ever read it? Does it mean to write, pretending that you’re totally bad ass and you couldn’t possibly produce pages and pages of pure shit? That’s what I’m trying to figure out.
I’m not the type to read some cute quote on a picture of kitty’s and say “Oh, now isn’t that sweet, and by golly, it makes so much sense!” No, my dumbass has to question it, has to over think it until I’m blue in the face, drooling, curled up in a ball and murmuring “Write fearlessly” as I cower in a corner. Write fearlessly. What the hell does that even mean? How can one write without any fear? Doesn’t one have to have achieved some form of substantial success before they can truly write without fear? You know, when you’re some popular, household name, sitting on crap tons of royalties and can count on people buying your books whether they’re crap or not? Don’t you have to be at that level before you can truly write without some form of fear?
Part of me thinks, “It’s simple, dumbass. It means write without concern for anything; readers, editors, word count, quality. Just write, stupid. That’s what it means.” Okay, that makes sense. Just write, stupid. Like when we were teenagers, and you’d sit and write in your flower patterned journal for hours, thinking it was some heavy, important, earth shattering shit. Really, it was a bunch of crap that you won’t remember, care about, and would probably laugh at two years later – but that’s beside the point.
Just write. That makes a little more sense to me. Just write, I can do that. Hell, I’m doing that now. Spellcheck? Proper quotations? Shit, I dunno, I’m just writing. Am I worried about star ratings? No, you can’t put star ratings on a blog post (ha ha, suckers!). Am I worried if no one will like it? No, I’m not trying to get you to pay to read my blog posts. Am I worried that it’s not good enough? No, its just another random blog post among the millions of other random blog posts, no one is expecting me to blow their minds with it. Ahh, it all becomes clear, dear Watson.
Write fearlessly, means to just write. Write to yourself, or to whoever you trust to know you at your most vulnerable state, someone who accepts you as you are without expectations. In writing fearlessly, there’s no room for worry or concern about voice or style. If you just write, the voice will always be that of your own. It will always be your style, you on the page. If you just write, there’s no room for worry if readers will like it; you’re not writing for readers, you’re just writing. The end result of it will find readers no matter what. There are millions of people, there will always be someone who enjoys your work.
Write fearlessly, means to just write. That’s it, write. Let only the words, whatever they are, fill your thoughts – and soon they will fill the pages. Just write… I think I’ll put that as a caption on some cute puppy picture, post it on Facebook and call it a day…