I’ve been in a huge funk. It’s affected every aspect of my life. I’ve been coming out of it since the school year started and forced me into a regular schedule. Wake up, go to work, work until mentally exhausted, deal with all the special needs as they arise, act professional, do paperwork, plan for the next day, go home, collapse on the couch, wish to be fed and snuggle in fuzzy jammies and go to sleep.
It all started with a story, a huge awesome story I was so proud of. A story I am still proud of. At first, I was praised for it by my muse and mentor. Then my mentor wanted to add a part. Then they asked me to market it under both of our names even though I did 95% of the work. I was not happy. I didn’t understand that they wanted to use it to promote our combined brand because to me that brand is more sci-fi than fantasy. This book is more fantasy than sci-fi. I was hurt. I thought they wanted to take credit for all my work and discredit me. I was also aware that I had hurt them. They felt I was writing around them and pushing them out. They stopped talking to me about writing. They stopped putting any effort into writing. They told me about how their other pursuits made them happy. I was trying to support them no matter what I felt, no matter that our past relationship was gone, but I was still seething, wracked with guilt, churning all the negative energy and anger up. I was ready to draw up a contract that says both parties must input at least 40% to the book and participate at least equally in the marketing of said book in order to brand it under the combined name.
Since I couldn’t react this way and couldn’t talk to the other person about it, I shut it all down. I quit. I stopped creating. I switched to painting first to be creative and try to see if I could make that a revenue stream.
Then, I had no creative energy left. I watched shows, read books, and sulked. I felt I had no mentor, no muse, to one to create for. I was ready to shut down all my websites, all my extraneous social media accounts. I was going to go sterile, uninventive, banal, pedestrian. I had hit depression, rock bottom.
I can’t explain to you what that feels like. You feel alone. No one understands. You feel useless.
I still entered 2 writing contests hoping to get new supporters. The mentor I wanted to be there was still not there. I shared a link to my work and they read it a day late, after the contest deadline. But I began to recognize their effort. I accepted their support because I wanted to heal.
Then here in the last few days my attitude has changed. I have suddenly forgiven the transgressions committed against me. I will do what I want with my book. I can market it however I want since they are too busy to help. I can put the combined name on it as a byline, as a gift of generosity. I can *try* to mentor them to get them back going on sci-fi works. I was hurt, but I’ve learned from it. I’m better than this and I can’t shut down my creativity. No one should have that kind of control over me! I should not want to impress someone so much that I tear myself down to become someone they might like or become the picture of slimy waste they made me feel like.
You might wonder why I’d still work to remain friendly with a person such as this, but to ask that is to ask why I remain friendly with myself. I overreacted, I am at fault. They overreacted instead of supported me, they might not ever apologize formally, but they did show me that they saw their fault and tried to support me in other ways. I’m going to choose generosity and kindness and forgiveness. I cannot dwell upon the one action out of the many because it hurt the most. I’m too mature for that and I will show maturity.