I'll be honest, this week has been tough. There are moments when I question why I keep writing. These moments of questioning aren't unique to this week. They exist throughout my day, both for my fiction and the non-fiction.
It is the reason I named this fledgling newsletter duende. It is a struggle.
Throw in a virus of some sort that saps all my energy, and I have serious thoughts of giving up. I feel lethargic and my brain is thick with a fogginess that slows everything down.
If I look at my subscriber numbers, I have every reason to give up.
The reason I am not giving up is that I am not looking at the stagnant number of people who read this (you only need one and a half hands to count them) but I am looking at the number of issues. I want to get to beyond one hundred. I may, or may not, be building something of value. Only time will tell.
I am kind of seeing it with the daily Odd Spot of Writing. I am up to 175, and for over 120 editions, I have been writing about one family. Amongst the approx 30,000 words I have written, I am seeing a story emerge. I see it as a Jonathan Franzen type of story. When I started writing these little vignettes late last year, I had no vision of what I was going to get. After #50, I saw the possibility of writing the same characters in different scenarios, with no adherence to a single plot. In one, Peter meets an alien. In others, Peter and Grace are happily married in old age.
In the story I am seeing emerge, they divorce and Peter spirals into an anger that isolates him.
I keep reminding myself of the possibilities. Raymond Chandler and Charles Bukowski published their first novels at 51. The list of authors who shine later in life is reaffirming.
And the only way I might join them in the list of late bloomers is if I keep showing up.