Black is an odd color choice for a toilet. To be fair, going alone to a crowded bar on a Friday night and hiding in the corner bathroom stall is an odd choice too, but there I was.
It’s been a long and windy road that my dream has taken me. It’s taken me to Amarillo Texas. It has taken me to a police station, a recording studio, and a lawyer. When I set out to follow my dream of being a writer I expected a lot of pajama-wearing laptop-staring afternoons. Instead, I’m staring at a gurgling toilet in a bar because I’m afraid of what I have got myself into.
I wonder if this happens to other people who have crazy dreams. One thing just leads to another. The only path is forward -or quitting. You usually learn this the hard way.
When I set out to record a trio of short stories, I supposed all I needed was a recording device. I was wrong. I was really, really, wrong. Soon I learned I needed to be in a professional studio. That may seem quite logical and glaringly obvious, but it wasn’t then. I was confronted with a true test. Was I willing to invest in myself? That’s a very hard question. I’m not a risk taker, I’m not adventurous. Self-doubt is my demon. He doesn’t just vacation in my brain he owns condos. He’s running for mayor.
I had to decide if I thought what I wrote was worth it.
What I didn’t know then was that all kinds of things would pop up on this journey. I learned that the best avenue to put it out in the world required it to be in print first. I had to hire an editor. I had to find a cover artist. I had to get a professional head shot. Good God, who would want a picture of me? And I had to pay for the evidence that it happened! The list of requirements kept spreading like a rash, with little end in sight, constant irritation, and no relief.
Writers have to be on social media. I don’t like social media. I like staying in and wearing slippers and writing stories about worlds that exist in my head. Each challenge posed a new opportunity to quit.
Do it or quit.
I did it.
That’s why I hid in the toilet at the bar. I was afraid that I wasn’t a good enough story teller, that my story was not interesting, or funny, or worthy of their precious free time.
I never imagined I’d join a group of storytellers. I never imagined I’d have a blog where I create those stories to tell. But I do. And maybe if they like my story they might like to read my stuff.
I took a deep breath, told the mayor to take five, and reread my notes. I had to decide if what I wrote was worth it.