Blocked and afraid.

I can’t write anymore. I’m giving up.

Have you ever had someone show you something like a drawing or painting they’re working on, like some rough looking anime type sketch of a breasty lady-tiger hybrid with eraser marks and smudges all over that looks like it was done by an eleven year-old with potential, and they’re really proud of it, like it’s the best thing they’ve ever done in their life? And you grin and tell them, “It’s great!” because they’re so proud and happy with it but you hope they don’t show anyone else because it’s hardly even mediocre?

That’s my biggest fear right now.

That I’m sharing my writing with people and they’re all just patting me on my back like, “Oh, how sweet and inspiring to see Candra be so vulnerable and share her work,” but really it’s all just a bunch of boring, try-hard bullshit and no one’s ever going to tell me because they see how much effort I’m putting into it and feel bad.

Writing is such a dumb hobbie today.

I’m having so much self-doubt all over the place.

I feel like an imposter.

I’m gonna go buy some stuff to bake cookies instead because at least there’s directions in baking.

Nothing I’m writing has any direction. I’m so frustrated. The stuff I’ve been working on that I kind of dig doesn’t seem to be going anywhere and the stuff that’s going somewhere needs so much polishing that I’m overwhelmed and it’s probably really boring and not worth it anyway. I don’t know.

I’m not really giving up, but I am having all these panicky thoughts like, “Oh, fuck, shut this thing down before someone finds it and you’re exposed.” I feel like I jumped the gun and started calling myself a writer too soon.

It’s just that my life has always felt like art unfolding to an annoying, nagging degree. It’s juicy with coincidences and subtle drama that I couldn’t make up if I tried. I have a wealth of material I don’t know what to do with. It always comes out in the most awkward ways like over-sharing in conversations with someone I hardly know, trying to impress them with my weird hero’s journey. (Is telling the guy you have a crush on about the time you got married in a religious fervor two weeks after high school and spent the summer crying yourself to sleep every night on a tour bus full of smelly men in a Christian hardcore band impressive? I don’t know, but it’s interesting at least.) I’ve just never believed myself to be quite talented enough to tell my own stories in a more meaningful way. Maybe they’re just for me after all.

And I just signed up for a wilderness first responder course in the spring so I can begin exploring careers or, at the very least, side gigs in the outdoors. That also has me feeling like such a huge poser because I am so inexperienced, but nothing on this planet makes me happier than walking around in nature so hopefully that passion will be enough to carry me. It will.

Self-doubt is so far up my ass right now, I’m telling you.

I will get over this.

I will write something brilliant someday, or at least something I don’t hate. I will obtain employment that gets me outside and allows me to share my enthusiasm with others.

But for now I’m googling cookie recipes.

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