Once we’ve spent some time driving the horses of our Chariot, it will become clear that some of the things that hold us back are not just competing drives, but fears.
My fears when it comes to writing are many: that I won’t have time to produce what I want; that I have nothing new to say; that I’ll never fully get the hang of the old adage when it comes to writing fiction: show don’t tell; that I’ll never have a wide readership; that the moment of being overwhelmed and giving up is always only a day away.
If being strong meant that I had to overcome all my fears before I started writing then I would never have been able to make a start. Writing is how I overcome my fears: making time each week day means that I see that I have time to produce work and that it builds up incrementally over time; I let myself free write and see that I have lots of new angles on subjects that I’ve never read anywhere else; I read widely in fiction to help build up my repertoire of what’s possible; I write on this blog and engage with the readers that I have and post snippets on IG to meet other readers where they are at; I keep my promise to myself daily to turn up at the page.
Strength is not a lack of fear. Strength is the courage to recognise and to try and move beyond the fear to see what lies there. There aren’t any shortcuts to tackling the lion, and for the conquest to be meaningful it must bring transformation. When we show up and face that ferocious lion’s mouth each day, we move closer towards the writer we imagine we could be.
Conquering our fears is a process, and a process that starts to establish our identity as a writer, and who we will become if we continue to defeat our fears along the way.