I went to a book swap here in Camas a few months back and found Chris Baty’s, “No Plot No Problem!” For those who do not know, he started this while NanoWriMo thing where authors come together in November with a goal to reach 50,000 words in 30 days. Here is a link:
I decided what the hell and dove in. Having read it and completed the challenge I can recommend the book to anyone.
Now it worked out for me to do this, because as you know, and the last time you heard, I was headed down the coast to California. But I changed my plans, still left, but chose a route called “The Sierra Cascades Adventure Route.” I made it as far as Parkdale – roughly 60 miles, before I knew I was done. That last night in Parkdale it was very late when I collapsed beside a Baptist church, sleeping on the ground because I had no other options. I was cold, alone, and I never wanted to feel that way again.
It was the wrong route, but it taught me a valuable lesson, that I need to have some sort of practical plan in place for my life. When I got back my parents were on their way to where they are now, so all three of us are crowded in their motorhome. Since I was in a holding pattern on getting work or going to college, I worked on this challenge. Unfortunately, I only made it to 30,000 words or so. I did get sick near the end, I could use that as an excuse, but as far as I am concerned, just like in my plans to bike to California, I failed.
It is very hard not to see myself as a failure. I try not to think of myself that way, I try to focus on what I have done. But I am not convinced. In the back of my mind the word failure is echoing, in regards not only to minor issues like my bike trip and this writing challenge, but also in just about every other area of my life. I am determined to change, to get out on my own and support myself. I am determined to go to college, and this time, come back with a degree in Computer Service. Everything seems to be flowing for me in that direction.
I am also determined to continue to work on myself, through the words of Tolle’s, “A New Earth” as I finish it and my continuing studies in, “A Course In Miracles.” I am also growing in my poetry and writing.
I have to believe that everything is exactly as it should be, even if I can not label it as desired or preferred. That I can continue developing my poetry and start another book but this time, this time, reach 50,000 words or more, revise it until it sparkles like a a multifaceted diamond, and then get it published. I have to believe this, or I will not want to keep going. I walk a cliff edge between giving in and the solid ground of going on. I could step off at any moment. I can not continue to live as I have, or even as I am. But I also must accept the circumstances and situations of my life, and be open as well as non-resistant to them.
I will try to record everything here, for anyone who wants to know. I will also try to continue detailing the experiences of my bicycle trip. The way I see it I have two choices before me, only these two. Go to college/get a job or bicycle to California, this time using the coastal route. If I choose this second options two things must and will happen. I will make it to the Big Sur in California, take “Pill B” which I may have told you about earlier, then, if nothing falls into place for me there, I am calling it quits.
For now going with the flow and not rushing into anything. Not attached to any particular outcome, or at least trying not to be, although I admit going back to college, making friends, dating, finding others who share my interests, and coming out of it with a degree is far more desirable to me than anything else. And hopefully, one day n the near future, I will have at least one publishable manuscript in the hands of an agent on its way to the bookshelves. If I can both finish college and do that then I will finally be able to honestly and truly think of myself as a success.
EDIT: WHEN I finish college and have delivered a publishable manuscript to an agent.