4. Stop Worrying
Worry is some useless shit. It does nothing. It has no basis in reality. It’s a vestigial emotion, useless as — as my father was wont to say — “tits on a boar hog.” We worry about things that are well beyond our control. We worry about publishing trends or future advances or whether or not Barnes & Noble is going to shove a hand grenade up its own ass and go kablooey. That’s not to say you can’t identify future trouble spots and try to work around them — but that’s not worrying. You recognize a roadblock and arrange a path around it — you don’t chew your fingernails bloody worrying about it. Shut up. Calm down. Worry, begone.
I want to make excuses here. I want to say ‘it will all work out.’ I want to see the glass half full. I want to look back in five years and think all the hours and countless time I wasted worrying about whether or not I was doing / writing / promoting the correct way will be worth it. However, it’s just not in my nature to do so. I am a worrier. I am a person with crazy insomnia that has nothing but hours at night to sit and go over how it’s all not going to work out – to second guess everything – to be concerned that things aren’t happening the way they should. Worrying is just part of who I am – especially when it comes to my writing.
We worry about things that are well beyond our control.
That phrase is pretty much the story of my life. I should make a cross stitch of this quote and put it up everywhere. It would make me recognize the following: I can’t control the publishing industry. Or if an agent wants to represent me. Or if someone wants to buy my books. What I can control is the quality of my writing. My characters. The worlds I create. I can control when my book is published. I can control what the cover looks like. I cannot control is any of my books will be runaway successes, but that part of why it keeps me interested.
What do you worry about the most?