Dex: “Are we gonna die?”
Tung: “I’m gonna stand like this (strikes pose) so my fossil looks awesome!”
These are yet more words of wisdom quoted by my 7 year old who produces parrot playback to perfection. The quote came from the cartoon, Dex Hamilton, Alien Entomologist. Such words often make me relate them to other more practical areas of life, like what will I leave behind when I die, or do I really want to be seen wearing that colour nail polish, or what impression would I leave on an agent at a conference?
Where I live, conferences are not easily accessible. Let’s put it this way. I might as well walk barefoot across the blistering desert to Ayer’s Rock in summer. All the writer’s conferences for my genre are as far from my home as the far, far away galaxy in Star Wars. So far that my fossil really would look awesome once my bleached bones were discovered thanks to not being able to afford the plane ticket when I first began walking there.
I’m not spewing at all, because I’m convinced that time will come. However I have an inner spasm-quiver thing going on because in honest to goodness, I’m a little bit shy and ever wary of making a total fossil of myself in front of an agent I might love to procure. My anticipation of this experience is shrouded in what if’s.
What if I say the wrong thing? What if I don’t sell enough? What if my tell-it-in-fifty-words scenario gets jumbled on the way out of my mouth? What if the tell-it-in-fifty works, but they didn’t like my pitch because I ain’t no salesman? What if (oh heck) I come face to face with Chip McGregor and he laughs me all the way out to the car park after I sneeze on him and a booger flies out of my nose and I have no tissues to cover this mortifying, career-end sealing, publishing-defying moment? What if I FAIL!!!???
Hmmm. Is it worth the risk?
I tell ya what. I’d rather run the risk of failing than live to see me and/or my stories become fossils in the pitch dark of writer’s midnight. I want more than my fossil to look awesome.
Decide: In the hindsight of life's autumn years, what do you want to look awesome in your life? What are you allowing to fossilize before your very eyes thanks to fear, or the fear of fear? If you sneezed on Chip (or any other potential agent you’d love to work with), would you be bold enough to work with it, even though it was seriously a gruesome moment of potential failure?
Il mourut à l'âge de 969 ans.