Thursday, August 16, 2012

When is it okay to quit?


I’ve been caught up in writing for the past couple of weeks. Not here (obviously), but on my novel. I wrote 27,000 words in about 10 days.

And then I quit.

Even though I was writing fast and furious, I kept thinking: this isn’t the story I want to tell. This isn’t the TYPE of story I want to tell. These aren’t the aspects of storytelling that I enjoy, that I’m drawn to.

But I don’t know. Did I quit? Did I just get scared? Should I have pushed through?

I didn’t quit writing altogether, oh no. I started a new story. A smaller one, a more personal one, one that had a beating heart I could see and feel. The other story was too big, too unwieldy.

Maybe the grass is just always greener? I have started many stories, and always around 10-15000 words I give up. I think it’s the wrong story. The idea, that seemed so perfect in my head, has become damaged goods. It’s been sullied by my clumsy hand, by my excessively bleeding heart, by my bad metaphors. It’s always around that time that something new will come to me. Suddenly I’ll have another idea, one that’s still and bright and shiny and fresh and undamaged.

I don’t know, maybe that’s a sign that I’m quitting out of fear. Maybe it means I should push through to the other side, see where I end up.

But then I think about Shaun. I used to be what you would call ‘commitment-phobic.’ I got to my mid (cough, late) twenties without ever having a serious relationship. As soon as a guy became interested in me, I panicked. I bailed. The only relationships I was interested in pursuing were with boys who weren’t interested in being pursued, or at least not by me.

And I analyzed this to death. I’m afraid of commitment, I concluded. I’m afraid of relationships, of opening myself up to people, of what that would mean.

And then I met Shaun. And there was no hesitation. None. Suddenly, everything I wanted was right there in front of me and I wasn’t afraid, not even a little. I leapt, and I never looked back.

So then I think maybe the fear is good. Or it isn't even fear at all, just the innate knowledge that those other things weren’t right for me. Those people weren’t right for me. My gut was telling me to move along, and I misread it as fear

Maybe it’s the same with stories as with people. Maybe, if you know yourself well enough, it’s okay to quit anything you want. 

I've been quitting a lot of things, lately, since I realized that. I've unsubscribed to so many blogs I used to read. Last week I got part way through a book and decided I wouldn't finish it. (There have been plenty of books I've started and not finished in my life, but I always tell myself I'll come back to them and finish them eventually. This time I just said, "I don't like this book and it isn't worth my time to finish it." How freeing.) I'll keep writing my story, for as long as it feels like the right thing to do, and when it stops, I'll reevaluate.. 

Quitting isn't a bad word. Quitting can mean freeing yourself from things that aren't right for you. Quitting can mean coming closer to the person you were actually supposed to be, all along. 


26 comments:

  1. I absolutely love, love, love the last paragraph! I've actually written it down and stuck it in my diary.

    "Quitting isn't a bad word. Quitting can mean freeing yourself from things that aren't right for you. Quitting can mean coming closer to the person you were actually supposed to be, all along. "

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad it resonated with you. :)

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  2. You have the ability to write as if you were speaking directly to me, guiding me through things. Thanks for (unknowingly) doing that, Andrea. xx

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    1. Aw, I'm glad it helped, sweetie! :)

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  3. I think you are much more self-aware than you give yourself credit for.

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    1. Actually, I do think I'm pretty self-aware -- just also very self-doubting. It's a weird combo. :)

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  4. I will echo the sentiments above, but also note, as a NaNoWriMo survivor, that there's also a power in barrelling throught eh self-doubt and the questions and the nagging feelings to just GET to the END and finish writing something. Even if you throw it out at that point. Even if you throw it in a drawer for two years.
    Sometimes the story is the wrong story, and sometimes your self-talk is the wrong self-talk.
    The hard part is knowing the difference.

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    1. Yes, I'd agree with this. I have finished nano on other occasions, even when the story wasn't working out. It's definitely useful to force yourself to finish sometimes. And yes, knowing the difference is the hardest part! In this case, I still think the other story is something I might come back to at some point, but I need some headspace to think about where I want it to go. I'm afraid if I go any further with it, it'll get to a point where I get too deep in the muck to see ANYTHING anymore.

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  5. My NaNoWriMo from last year still sits, unedited, on my computer. It wasn't the right story. I have felt what you described, but I haven't been able to express it properly. So, thank you for that. There is something incredibly freeing when you rid yourself of things that aren't 'right,' whether it be items, ideas, people or projects.

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  6. I've had the pleasure of writing with you at Camp NaNoWriMo this summer. I think if you aren't happy with the story you're in at 15,000 then it makes sense to start again. The synopsis you have now is awesome! It's not so much quitting as discernment.
    My problem is that I've got a voice inside me called "Be Perfect". It drives everything I do and I've finally learned that I don't have to be perfect all the time. It makes me unhappy and frustrated that I can't do things as well as I'd like, as I feel I ought somehow to do them. What's worse, sometimes it means I don't start things, am paralysed by fear of starting them for fear of failure, knowing it won't be perfect. That's worse than quitting, I think.
    I'm lucky that my stories are in a world of my own using characters that live in my house (and their friends who I find in my head). So I was able to get through that 15,000 barrier once I'd realised I had to write a 50,000 word novel - not a perfect 50,000 word novel! I like what's emerged, but it'll need a lot of editing. Maybe 40,000 words will survive.
    It's been a pleasure to be at CampNaNoWriMo with you and good luck with this story and everything else you do.

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  7. Great post. I think it's critical to be honest with yourself, and sometimes, once you're sure about the turn the writing is taking, you just have to put it down and walk away.

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  8. Hii Friends My name is christine I live in carlifornia.I had issues with my marriage of six years. My husbands name is henry.He abandoned me and my two year old baby girl for no reason which I later got to find out that he was under a spell by another woman in his department.It started after five years of our marriage that he doesn't listen to me anymore starve the family of his physical presence.It got to a point that he asked us to leave the house.we were forced to move to a friends house.One day I saw a post of Dr.Paloma on the internet I contacted him (palomaspelltemple@yahoo.com).he helped me restore my home.It will be nice you give him a try if you are currently facing marriage or relationship challenges.

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  10. hello everyone my name is Cindy John, i just want to share my experience and testimony here.. i was married for 7 years to my husband and all of a sudden, another woman came into the picture he started hating me and he was abusive. but i still loved him with all my heart and wanted him at all cost then he filed for divorce my whole life was turning apart and i didn't know what to do he moved out of the house and abandoned the kids that we have, so someone told me about trying spiritual means to get my husband back and introduced me to a spell caster name prophetludaspelltemple@outlook.com. so i decided to try it reluctantly. although i didn't believe in all those things then when he did the special prayers and spell, after 2 days, my husband came back and was pleading for my forgiveness that he had realized his mistakes I just couldn't believe it anyway we are back together now and we are happy in case anyone needs this man, his email address prophetludapelltemple@outlook.com his spells is for a better life.

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  11. My husband had been gone for about 13 months, I contacted ophan spell and within a few minutes of speaking with him, I realized that ophan spell was the one person whom I could completely trust. I didn't expect the spell would work so fast. Within 48 hours, My husband was back in my life. After been paid thousands of dollars to other spell caster and got no results at all.. I want to express my warmest gratitude, ophan spell I'll never ever forget all the happiness you gave me. you out there my papa is the right person who can help You, contact him via his private mail ophanprayertemple@yahoo.com

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  12. I never believed in love spells or magic until I met this spell caster once when i went to see my friend in Indian this year on a business summit. I meant a man who's name is Dr ATILA he is really powerful and could help cast spells to bring back one's gone, lost, misbehaving lover and magic money spell or spell for a good job or luck spell .I'm now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 5 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 3years. I really loved him, but his mother was against us and he had no good paying job. So when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him. At first i was undecided,skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. And in 7 days when i returned to Canada, my boyfriend (now husband) called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married. I didn't believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do. Well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid, and my husband also got the new job and our lives became much better. His email is atilahealinghome@yahoo.com

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  13. I’m Mercy brown by name I have a few testimony to share with you all about myself, I was in a relationship with this guy and for 3years and we were about getting married when we both have misunderstanding with each other and he ask me for a divorce and we both agreed and after 4months I head that he was having an affair with one of my closest friend and I was very upset and worried so a friend of my advice me and told me if I still love my ex and if I really want to have him back so I told her yes, and she ask me to contact Dr. Madurai the spell caster and I did although I never believe on spell so he gave me something when he was casting the spell and ask me to say my wishes on it and after the casting of the spell a receive a phone call from my ex and was ask me at which I did and now we are back together again I’m so happy and I wish not to ever have this mistake again in my life. I will also advice anyone with this kind of issue to contact him for help he is really nice on phone and always there to answer you question giving you the good advice that you need. his email is maduraitemple@yahoo.com

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  14. i am giving this testimony cos l am happy My name is mrs. Lara Mark from Houston,taxes.i never believed in love spells or magic until i met this spell caster once. when i went to Africa in December this year on a business summit. i ment a man called dr. UKOSE.He is powerful he could help you cast a spells to bring back my love’s gone,misbehaving lover looking for some one to love you, bring back lost money and magic money spell or spell for a good job.i’m now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 3 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 2 years… i really loved him, but his mother was against me and he had no good paying job. so when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him..at first i was undecided,skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. and in 6 days when i returned to taxes, my boyfriend (is now my husband ) he called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married..i didn’t believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do… well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid,and my husband also got a new job and our lives became much better. in case anyone needs the spell caster for some help, email address ukosespelltemple@yahoo.com Great UKOSE i thank you very much thank you in 1000000 times.. if not you i would have been losted and wasted thank you. please make sure you contact him for any financial difficulties okay.. What a powerful man such as DrUKOSE.. he is so much powerful..\\ email him for any difficulties.. ukosespelltemple@yahoo.com

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  15. i am miss MONICA from U K, I promise to share this testimony all over the world once my boyfriend return back to me, and today with all due respect i want to thank DR.UKO for bringing joy and happiness to my relationship and my family. I want to inform you all that there is a spell caster that is real and genuine. I never believed in any of these things until i loosed my boyfriend, I required help until i found ukospelltemple@yahoo.com a grate spell caster, And he cast a love spell for me, and he assured me that I will get my boyfriend back in two days after the spell has been cast. two days later, my phone rang, and so shockingly, it was my boyfriend who has not called me for past 10 years now, and made an apology for the heart break, and told me that he is ready to be my back bone till the rest of his life with me. DR.UKO released him up to know how much i loved and wanted him. And opened his eyes to picture how much we have share together. As I'm writing this testimony right now I'm the most happiest girl on earth and me and my boyfriend is living a happy life and our love is now stronger than how it were even before our break up. So that's why I promised to share my testimony all over the universe.All thanks goes to DR.UKO for the excessive work that he has done for me. Below is the email address in situation you are undergoing a heart break, and I assure you that as she has done mine for me, she will definitely help you too. ukospelltemple@yahoo.com

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  16. This is a testimony that I will tell to every one to hear. I have been married four 4years and on the fifth year of my marriage, another woman had a spell to take my lover away from me and my husband left me and the kids and we have suffered for 2years until I met a post where this man DR UKO have helped someone and I decided to give him a try to help me bring my lover back home and believe me I just send my picture to him and that of my husband and after 48hours as he have told me, I saw a car drove into the house and behold it was my husband and he have come to me and the kids and that is why I am happy to make every one of you in similar to met with this man and have your lover back to your self. His email:ukospelltemple@yahoo.com

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  17. Am Emily Powell from Canada I never believed in spell casters until my life fell apart when my lover of 4 years decided to call it quit. I was so devastated that i had an accident that left me bedridden. After 7 months of emotional pain and languish, a friend of mine introduced me to a certain spell caster, this was after I have been scammed by various fake spell caster. I was introduced to DR ONIHA ( A Spell Caster). In less than 12 hrs i saw wonders, my Lover came back to me and my life got back just like a completed puzzle... am so happy.. Dr ONIHA have all kinds of spells from pregnancy to love,from employment to visa lottery winning. He has spell to stop divorce,spell to make someone look attractive and others. here's his contact for serious minded people only, it might be of help....onihaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com. wow Dr.ONIHA...thanks am so grateful as you saved my life.

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  18. My name is Jennifer and i want to testify of the good work done by a faithful DR PALOMA, a spell caster. in my life i never thought there is such thing as spiritual intercession. my problem started 5 months back when the father of my kids started putting up some strange behavior, i never knew he was having an affair outside our matrimonial home. it dawn on me on that faithful day 4th of April 21st 4:23pm when he came to the house to pick his things that was when i knew that situation has gotten out of hand and he then told me he was quitting the marriage which i have built for over 6 years, i was confused and dumbfounded i called on family and friends but to no avail. two months after i started having problem with my kids welfare rent-age and all of it, i really went through ***. until a day i was browsing on the internet and i happen to meet DR PALOMA Email palomaspelltemple@yahoo.com i never believed on this but i needed my man back so i gave the spell caster my problem at first i never trusted him so i was just doing it but you know a problem shared is half solved after a 2das my husband called me telling me that he his coming back home and that was all. now we are living happily and i still do contact him on this email: palomaspelltemple@yahoo.com

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  19. Three weeks ago my boyfriend broke up with me. it all started when i Travel to UK to spend my holiday with my friend,i was trying to contact him but it was not going through. So when i came back from UK i saw him with a lady kissing, i was frustrated and it gives me sleepless night. I called my friend told her what happened and she introduce me to a spell cater who helped her long time ago. Which i contact him and i never believed that the spell will work so easily because i have contacted many spell casters to get him back all they do is to take my money with no result. I am happy to tell you all that my boyfriend is back and committed to me alone and he do whatever i ask him to do with love and care. All thanks to DR ADAGBA the great magician who helped me to restore my boy friend to me:adagbaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com.. Email this powerful and authentic spell caster via email now adagbaspiritualtemple@yahoo.com

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  20. My true life story! i am into business,but it was not bringing out profit as it was supposed to, life was not what living cos things was bad for me financially, i have a beautiful wife with two kids to take care off. i sold my car and most of my property just to keep earns mate and still things was not going easily for me. so i complained to a friend of mine who said he knows a powerful spell caster from Africa called Dr Amba who can perform magical money spell, good luck and automatic promotion in office, spell to bring back your ex lover, spells to bring close one in jail lost back home,healing spell.that help straightened his brother life from taking hard drugs. At first i was confused and doubtful, then i decided to give a try and did what Dr Amba told me to do, to my greatest surprise 24hours later things started going well for me, i got what i ever bargained for, my business was flourishing like never before, i now have enough money to take good care of my family and we are living happily,I thank His greatness. for bringing my source to hope and joy with his powerful spell,well if you want to be a living testimony like me or interested in any spell casting you can contact Dr Amba via this email: ambatemple@yahoo.com

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  21. i am giving this testimony cos l am happy My name is mrs. Lara Mark from Houston,taxes.i never believed in love spells or magic until i met this spell caster once. when i went to Africa in July this year on a business summit. i ment a man called dr. UKO.He is powerful he could help you cast a spells to bring back my love’s gone,misbehaving lover looking for some one to love you, bring back lost money and magic money spell or spell for a good job.i’m now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 3 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 2 years… i really loved him, but his mother was against me and he had no good paying job. so when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him..at first i was undecided,skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. and in 6 days when i returned to taxes, my boyfriend (is now my husband ) he called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married..i didn’t believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do… well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid,and my husband also got a new job and our lives became much better. in case anyone needs the spell caster for some help, email address ukospelltemple@yahoo.com Great UKO i thank you very much thank you in 1000000 times.. if not you i would have been losted and wasted thank you. please make sure you contact him for any financial difficulties okay.. What a powerful man such as Dr UKO.. he is so much powerful..\\ email him for any difficulties.. ukospelltemple@yahoo.com or his website: ukospelltemple.wixsite.com/mysite

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