Monday, April 27, 2009

A Good Self-Talk

The show on Friday was a success! We had a great turnout and lots of energy from the crowd. My only 2 goals at a show: talk to people (push past the awkwardness and try not to let them see it) and have fun. For most people, these goals are very simple, a natural byproduct of performing. For an artistic introvert however, being relaxed in front of a crowd is a huge chore. So I'm happy to say that I met my goals for the evening.

I was especially nervous because I was selling my art for the first time in public. So in addition to my already exposed lyrics and vocals, I felt extra vulnerable. There were now multiple ways to judge and reject me. But I was happily surprised by peoples' reactions. I ended up selling almost $100 worth of my art! Hopefully my newfound confidence will carry over.

While I'm so thankful to have opportunities to explore art and music, writing has been somewhat disappointing lately. After attending a writer's conference a few months ago, I came away feeling overwhelmed and disillusioned. I had been pouring all of my efforts into writing my book, but after listening to the speakers, it seemed futile. 

The odds are definitely against me as a writer. But this afternoon, I had a good talk with myself about it. I asked myself why I wanted to write. The part of me that was disappointed was the part that hoped to earn a living from writing. But the part of me that longed to share hope with other women- that part didn't care at all what anyone thought, or if it was published by a big name, or even made any  money. 

So I thankfully reminded myself that I am compelled to write, and I challenged myself to keep doing it. This weekend I'm going to visit my in-laws and give myself a "writing retreat." And I will keep looking for opportunities to write, regardless of the pay or visibility. Because I honestly want to help encourage other people, I will seek out creative ways to do it. Maybe sending a card to someone on my heart or calling up a friend just to tell her how awesome she is. I don't have to wait for someone to ask me to be a blessing. I'm going to start living that out intentionally.


Linda said...

Wish I could have been there Michelle - sounds like a great evening. How wonderful that you sold so much of your art - I'm so happy for you.
As for the writers conference, those speakers deserve to be sacked - they certainly aren't doing their job properly!
But your post ends in a positive and uplifting way....good for you, keep going.
Take care...
Linda xo

Healing Expressions said...

Oh Michelle...Follow that part of you that knows writing is how she breathes! Even in the dry times if we keep moving in the direction of our gifts the door will open to meet us at the least expected times. I am getting ready to take a risky on-line break but know its what I must do. Your package will be in the mail next week though. Can you email me to confirm your address again!
Take Good Care!

Moff said...

Hey lady,

I've been to a couple of writing conferences recently --AWP in Chicago and a local conference in DC-- and I understand what you're saying. It's kind of blocked my poetry, to be honest.

But I also agree that you have to keep trying... accept that going to these conferences is difficult but refining, and then go back and do it again as soon as you're ready.

We do write because we have something to say, and frankly, what you and I put on our blogs has the potential to reach many more people than literary mags and even many books. Nourishing the members of our online community may be THE REASON why we write. and that may be enough. I know you encourage me a great deal with your openness about your depression... and I'm assuming I'm not alone.

Anyhoo, that's my two cents from someone who's in a very similar creative boat, at least as far as writing is concerned (I also sing, but not in a band, unfortunately. :^( )

Barbara Olivo Cagle said...

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Barbara Olivo Cagle
4575 Wanakiwin Dr.
Loon Lake, WA 99148
(509) 233-8051 HM
(509) 951-7300 CELL

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