Monday, January 31, 2011

More Thoughts on Resistance

I'm making my way—slowly—through The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.

It's actually a very quick read if all you want to do is finish it and mark it off your list. But I suggest you get yourself a copy of this book, read a page or two, and let some of the things he has to say sink in.

The relevance of his words are not just for writers, or 'artists', but for anyone who has a dream.

Here he's talking about Resistance:

The danger is greatest when the finish line is in sight. At this point, Resistance knows we're about to beat it. It hits the panic button. It marshals one last assault and slams us with everything it's got.

When I near the actual end of a writing project, especially one I've spent months on, I can feel the battle. There's an undercurrent that pulls at my excitement and questions my sureness of the ending. One that feeds my doubts by telling me that once the last page is finished, no one will like it. Once I've completed the manuscript, there's no more keeping it to myself, and no more pretending I'm a writer.

Resistance by definition is self-sabotage. But there's a parallel peril that must also be guarded against: sabotage by others. . . . They may become moody or sullen, they may get sick; they may accuse the writer of 'changing,' of 'not being the person she was.'"

I remember years ago when I joined Weight Watchers to lose some weight, the meeting leader told us we might find some of our friends would become unhappy with us. Especially those friends who we used to eat with on a regular basis. I thought she didn't know my friends. Turns out, she was right. As Pressfield goes on to say,

The reason is that they are struggling, consciously or unconsciously, against their own Resistance.

Have you experienced either of these in your life, writing or otherwise?

CR: Everything but the Squeal by Timothy Hallinan.

It's all better with friends.

1 comment:

  1. I hadn't heard of this book, but I've just checked it out and it sounds great. I'm off to download the Kindle version. Thanks! :)