I thought of yellow this morning because today is the day of Y on the “a to z blogging challenge.” There are lots of other words I could have used, but this one came to me because I am a writer.
Historically speaking yellow has a few different meanings: sunny, bright, caution, life-giving; coward. Yellow didn’t always have this particular meaning, but it sometimes does in our day and age. I, as a writer, often dread the thought of being a coward. Why, you ask, would I think of myself as a coward? Because, as I’m sure you can all relate to, I often feel I’m not a “good enough” much less “great” writer.
I ask myself if it is cowardice born of fear that holds me back from my true potential. Wouldn’t it be great if it were so easy to explain away? I’ve read Stephen King’s book "On Writing." Upon finishing felt he’d relegated me sight unseen to the slush pile because I wasn’t born spewing talent from my fingertips. I wish I had been, but regardless of what I wish, I am me and only me. I can only do what I can do.
Fear does hold me back at times; fear of never achieving my goals, fear of being delusional that I can actually accomplish my dreams, fear of not being a good writer. Fear of not laying my soul bare enough. But what does “fear” actually mean and am I a coward for giving in to it?
My husband told me once that the acronym “F.E.A.R” means “False Evidence Appearing Real.” In our ancestors fear was a mechanism to keep one safe. If you feared something you paid attention and could avoid danger and death. In spite of my fear, my cowardice, I still write. I still push on. I deal with this “weakness” every day and keep writing. I think that this must be the true point for me to pay attention to. Perseverance.
I’ve heard it said that a hero is only a person who doesn’t let his fear stop him. I will, therefore, continue with my words and my stories and strive to allow the hidden hero inside me to see the bright, healing sunshine yellow of day. I will continue to believe that it is totally possible for me to achieve my goal and make my living by my words, that I will one day be so very, and incredibly, happy that I didn’t give in and give up; that I didn’t, in the long run, let fear or cowardice prevent me from trying.