I sometimes wonder if my life is following the hero’s journey. For those of you unfamiliar see here. The method is commonly used as a template for plotting fiction.
I look back over my trails and inciting incidents and black moments. I am forced to make a decision to hear the call to adventure and go through the doorway of no return.
I see these patterns again and again.
And now, I feel the cycle repeating.
A bit of background, I left my full time job to write and live on a part time salary. Leaving a well-paying, secure job was a leap into the great beyond, an act of faith, a symbolic burning of the boats. I thought I could swing it for a year, maybe two.
Seven years later, I hang on. My writing has grown through all the battles of daily survival. I learned new skills. Met allies (hi Tina!!) and found my true path to happiness was living a life as an author.
Ahh, but in every good story the conflict must escalate or there is no growth and advancement. I feel the squeeze of my employment situation on the verge of changing. I know my status and finances will alter drastically once my last child graduates high school (which is soon). I also know that I’ve depleted my resources.
And one more nugget of info, after seven years out of the job market, I’m not qualified for much of anything, but being a writer. Or perhaps a waitress.
I face having to finally put my writing out there in an indie gambit.
Huge parts of me say no. Scream no. But I understand that I’m a perfectionist, and if I wait until I’m ready I will never put something out.
I have a backlog of stories. Good stories that I love. But I worry.
I feel the Black Moment approaching. The all-is-lost feeling creeps up my spine and I dread venturing into new untested waters. I hesitate to enter the lion’s den of the Amazon and wait for an audience’s judgment. The thought makes my stomach feel like a saltwater taffy machine at a carnival.
But if I want to be the hero of this story I have to face the lions (and tigers and bears, if necessary). Step-by-step, I prepare for my final battle. I search for good editors, cover artist, and pray that I’m not just throwing the last of my money into a swirling vortex of nada.
I sometimes wish my story didn’t have so many conflicts, but struggle is at the heart of any grand adventure. The trials make the hero strong enough to face the lions.
The gate opens, and the crowd cheers.
I put on my armor. I do the work. I step into the den.
What about you? Is there a dragon or a lion you’ve had to face? The loss of a job? The loss of a relationship? The fear of starting a new chapter in your life? Comment below! I love comments.