Writers: We Are At War With Ourselves

I never realized how hard it is to do something creative, like write a novel. Every day is a battle to get going and stay focused and keep butt in chair and make stuff come out on the computer or on paper.

One of the biggest helps to me in this endeavor has been Steven Pressfield’s book The War of Art. And it truly is a war, that must be fought and won every day.

I recently viewed an interview by Joanna Penn with Steven Pressfield about mental toughness and overcoming resistance. It’s worth watching, to get a sense of what Pressfield’s message.

The War of Art is in 3 parts – Part 1 describes what Pressfield calls “the Resistance.”  He makes the Resistance sound like some malevolent, evil force in the universe. Well, maybe, but I think he’s exaggerating to make his point.samurai iStock_000014210757XSmall

The third section is the good forces, Angels, that guide us on our way. He talks about God and the Universe.

Pressman’s stuff sounds like The Secret, which was popular back a few years. It is the kind of stuff that allows people to believe that if you think about getting that parking spot at work, you’ll drive into the lot and it will be there.

I don’t think it’s that big or that personal. It sounds more to me like the endorphins, the natural high we get when we exercise or make love, or do a number of other things.

But if it helps me or you get to work, that’s great. That’s his point.

The second section is about being on the job, being a professional, getting to work as if this were a job where you had to work to get paid. Well, you do. So just get to work. Whatever thought games you have to play with yourself. As Nike says, “Just Do It.”

I prefer Yoda’s essential bit of wisdom: “Do or do not. There is no try.”yoda iStock_000021310564XSmall
Actually, Pressman sounds a bit like Yoda. All the stuff about “the Force.” But then this stuff is basic, universal.

Read Pressman but don’t get too hung upon the details. Feel the Force (the Angels, or whatever you want to call them), resist the Dark Side (the Resistance) and just get to work on your writing, or whatever it is you want to do.

 

Be Sociable, Share!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>