Have you ever done something just to feel the danger, or to feel alive?
Um… no. But now I feel like I’m missing out on something!
I’m not a fan of danger. I enjoy my life too much to risk loosing it for a joy ride. Its full enough, rich enough and interesting enough that I don’t need to seek out danger to get my thrills and spills. I get enough of those going to work every day, or sitting in the house deciding what piece of fiction to write next.
I remember a climbing frame back when I used to live with my Mum, before we moved and I couldn’t believe how exciting it was. I used to dangle upside down for the hell of it and loosen the grip of my legs to see if I could reach the floor while upside down. Without falling and cracking my skull.
When we moved, it was several years before I went back to the park which held the climbing frame. When I did, I was tall enough and old enough to think that the whole thing had shrunk and I could probably catch hold of the bar I used to use, while on my knees, without even stretching my arms. It really wasn’t far off the ground at all.
What I remember most, however, was the fact that even though it was so much easier now I was older, I couldn’t bring myself to hang upside down like I used to. Nor could I climb to the top of the frame; a feat which used to take me 30 seconds flat.
I had developed fear.
Not that fear is bad; I think the fear of cracking your head by pulling a silly stunt is sensible. But it revealed to me suddenly that I was afraid because I had stuff to loose. I’d already learnt that pain was (and obviously still is) unpleasant. So I didn’t want to risk it.
I guess that’s the sort of person I am.
I don’t like to take risks, because I don’t necessarily like the danger. I don’t like the risk of emotional, physical or mental pain.
Then… here is the key question:
WHY THE HELL HAVE I CHOSEN PROFESSIONAL FICTION-WRITER AS MY LIFE GOAL?!
Its probably one of the most damaging professions you could ever choose! Constant rejections and batterings of your hours and hours of work. All the time!
I got another rejection a few weeks back. Admittedly I’d forgotten I even sent out the piece, but when it came back I was stunned by how much it hurt. Again. Its not the first one. And of course if I mean to keep doing this, then its not going to be the last either (its DEFINITELY not going to be the last).
So maybe the answer to this question is actually yes. Maybe the choice of writing in this way is one big ‘something to feel the danger.’ Danger of rejection. Danger of indifference. Danger of perpetual anonymity.
Yikes… maybe I am a bit of a dare devil after all!
My 80 Post Challenge is brought to you with help from Tom Slatin’s 80 Journal Writing Prompts.