Wednesday, April 25, 2012

What scares you?

I think most, if not all, of us have things that give us chills. Your particular fear might not be classified as a full-blown phobia, but it might be enough to cause you to develop sweaty palms, at least.

Me, I'm afraid of heights. I don't mind being way off the ground if there is a rail for me to hang onto, but put me close to some sort of ledge where there's nothing between me and eternity but air, and I'm in a real fix. I don't do ladders. Don't put me on the roof. I don't even like writing about these things.

YMMV, as they say. Public speaking puts some folks into a gibbering panic. Others have problems with snakes. Or spiders. Fill in your own blanks.

What happens when you scare yourself? Where does that come from?

One bizarre phenomenon I've experienced is that I can become afraid of my own words. When I was writing my first book ("Reign of Silence," of course - what do you mean you haven't read it yet?) there were a couple of times when I had to stop and physically shake off the heebie-jeebies. As I think I've shared before, I wrote a huge chunk of it in an old farmhouse out in the middle of nowhere, and there was one night in particular when I heard every noise in the house. Whew.

Now, as I'm in the throes of writing "The Fixin' Place," I've had a couple of moments of the same thing. While TFP is a totally different book from "Reign of Silence," there have been a couple of sequences that, while not exactly frightening me, have had me typing at a gallop, pulse pounding. It's as though my synapses can't fire fast enough for me to keep up with what I want to say. Yeah, I know how odd that sounds, but I'm just trying to keep it real.

I don't know how to explain it other than that my divine muse showed up. Those moments are transporting. And for you ... you might be at a place in your own life where you're struggling with some issue, some project, some relationship that is wearing you down. Well, here's the good news. Fear not. It's going to be OK.