As I contemplated some concepts for the newly invigorated project it occurred to me that the writers mind is somewhat depraved and almost always indifferent. Int he real world, these are things that create a psychopath, but int he make believe world of a fiction writer, these are the things that make heroes out of men and women who put down words onto paper.
Okay, maybe hero is a strong word; too strong. Still, we tend to glorify the written word because history teaches us that communication is what truly began the advancement of civilization from cavemen days to what we see before us - so that first symbol on a cave wall, that was the beginning of what we aspire to this moment.
And yes, we are narcissistic. We want to have others pick up our words, read them and say 'holy fuck, that guy is fucking brilliant." It is why we write. We have this thing in our head that believes what we have to say is important and the manner in which we say it is better than anyone else.
Well, most of us anyway. But that is really the pain of the muse and the tortured soul that drives us. Did I look int he mirror as a kid and say "writing, yeah, that's for me?" No. Writing was something that I did; it is something that flowed out from me not because I really and truly thought I was someone special, but because it was just something that was there. So, while it appears somewhat narcissistic to put your name down and send letters to people saying "hey, look at my work, I think you should like it and I think you should tell other people to like it." Hence, we send queries to agents.
While there is a bit of a narcissistic bent to what we do, there is also that bit of inferiority complex that drives us. We look in the mirror and the soul which stares back at us we deem as not good enough on its own. We want validation because we don't feel validated. We sell our stuff because that proves we are worthwhile.
Me? There is a big ball of confused arrogance wrapped around a scared little kid who has no clue what he is capable of and whether he has any valuable skill that others will appreciate. A middle child filled with self-doubt, yet also filled with an incredible curiosity and a drive to be the absolute very best at anything I do.
When I was a distance runner, I wanted to set world-records; I trained like a madman. I ran over 100 miles per week. See me now and you might shit yourself to hear that number. I am now a 240 pound powerlifter. And, like everything else, I wanted to be the best. And I came damn close; I once bench pressed 680 pounds - just 30 pounds off the then world record for my weight class.
Now I write. Seeing the sheer mass number of people who write to dream about being the 'best' is ludicrous. Writing is subjective; there is no best. But there is a best I can be and I will continue to strive toward that goal. I want to perfect the craft of writing.
As a self-published, so-called 'indie' author, that means I have to take the slow road. What makes a writer stand out is not just a character or a story but a style. I have my own voice and I know it is unique. now I just have to find the right audience.
The future is bright and the future is bleak. But the road is one I must travel in order to feel complete within my own soul.