Thursday, September 20, 2012

Irrationality and Hope

Let's just get this out of the way: politics and I are not rational bedfellows. This stems from the kind of social anxiety in which ostracism is assumed and speaking your mind is a sin. I have a deep, reflexive revulsion for candidates who demonize the weak or those they perceive to be powerless or less than human. It's been a difficult election season and Facebook has turned into my bete noir. A post or two can ruin an otherwise productive morning.

Anchors of hope are welcome, therefore, and I've been fortunate to find a couple recently. The first is a new writer's group centered on my local library. After the first meeting last night it seems like this is going to be a good, get-back-to-basics group and I'm looking forward to moving my novel draft from "when can you show it to an agent" to "how are you reweaving the plot in this draft."

The second is a book on art and fear, titled Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking by David Bayles and Ted Orland. If the rest of the book is as good as the beginning, several people I know will be getting this book for Christmas.

I need to get a handle on my quickness to abandon projects out of anger and the fear of weakness mentioned in the first part of A&F. Sometimes the armor is a good playlist, sometimes the subtle pressure of a good group meeting for which I should prepare something.

Hope needs to win.

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