Delusional Optimism : Fake Your Way Upwards

dearest Odyssians,

never give up on your dreams
never stop dreaming your dreams

This is great advice from matt berninger of The Nationals, and I’m following it to get my first novel to print. Though the book is “done”, (which took me almost a year and half of sometimes grueling, heartbreaking, tear jerking stress and doubt, mixed with moments of pure elation and gratification at finding my true purpose on this planet), there is so much more work to be done. And there’s no way I can give up now.


O and OM


9 thoughts on “Delusional Optimism : Fake Your Way Upwards

  1. I am so looking forward to reading your book! I notice so often with myself and others that right before the end of a long term dream/visioning with action/ long hard work thing – there is this strong pull to give up. For me, building this house (took almost 10 years!), I almost gave up because there was ONE MORE really hard thing. Of course all my friends didn’t let me, but the pull was so strong, like I couldn’t handle one more thing as I was already hanging on by one finger nail, clawing for solid ground. Ah yes….so happy I stuck with it!! It is good that you know your book needs to be out there! <3

    • Mary..
      The story that you’ve shared is so critical for me right now. Everything I’m going thru you’ve experienced and more. The allegory about your friends struggles makes complete sense. And i so wish that there was a magic spot on my brain where your words of wisdom always resided.

  2. PS Or, like 3 of my friends almost gave up on their doctorate because of having to change the dissertation so many times. Just couldn’t make themselves do it one more time. But again, of course, all their friends who had seen them through the whole program, said …nooooooo! Are you freakin’ kidding me?!
    Not that you are thinking of giving up….just that a lot of people feel like that.

    • Hi Mary. (writing from a typo-making cellphone touch screen)

      I am tremendous glad that you kept going on the house project . Real reward is in the long term., as you’ve shared with me. Ten years on a house means the place is completely yours, and there’s no better feeling than having a home, made and kept and owned as one’s own. 🍣

      I know why your friends seeking the PhDs did quit so close to the finish line – The point closest to the finish line is where most people quit. They were told victory was theirs if they got through 95% of the race = bold faced lies. The 20th mile of the 26 is hard. But the last five miles are the hardest, with each one getting increasingly more difficult. Those last miles to the end, are the determiners between failure and success, not the first 20 miles.

      But they never tell people seeking glory this. Somehow I came into book writing unaware that in order to win at anything, you have to keep at it long after you expected. And then keep at it some more. and then some more. That’s life.

      Enter me. I was one of those naive people that believed things would get easier after the first twenty miles of the marathon that is book writing.
      Why was I so naive??

      Who knows. All that matters is that after if I spent a year and a half on a book that nearly killed me to write, I really thought the last five miles – selling the book- would be easier. Why? Because I put genuine effort in on the front end.
      I was wrong. Things get harder the higher you climb.

      I’m also paralyzed by the knowing the work I’ve done on the book so far ultimately counts for Jack****, unless I can publish the book. That involves me stepping outside of myself as an artist, and becoming a carnival barker skilled enough to sell ice to Eskimos aka find an agent, and then a publisher, and the promote, and website, and fan base, and share. We all know the world doesn’t need to sold another book. So Why do I want to put myself over hot coals to sell it?

      Because I must. Im a writer, and nothing more. I wrote this book in good faith, and hopefully in good taste. I wrote this book to the best of my abilities. I wrote it to be heard. and ultimately, I wrote it knowing I would have to sell it.

      Sometimes I think I should remind myself of the work I’ve already done. and give myself some congrats for making it the 20 miles. Truth is, Not everyone writes a book. and even less people “finish” a book. Because it’s damn hard. Then I think of selling a book being Even harder, and my joy at finishing it in the first place fades.

      These are the most trying days. And though I am completely alone, writing from the darkened space of a parked car in a quiet suburb, a place where no one in this entire vast planet of stars and moons and planets to other billions of animals and people gives a half rats squirt about what I’m doing, I am still here. And I still need to make my book physical reality.

      Hugs. Always.
      O and om

  3. Hey O and OM,

    I heard on the grapevine you’d paused for breath at the water-station to mop your furrowed brow, so thought I’d nip across the puddle and leave a message in your running shoe…

    ‘” No endless duration is our goal, but complete repose in the perfect satisfaction which the will finds when it has reached the significance, the influence, and the value at which it is aiming ”

    Keep going, you are nearly there…


    DN – 08/09/2015

    • Well dn-
      The grape vine hasn’t lied, persay. But I do have heartwarming news that makes my break seem less quit and more rally. While the tome rests, I am hard at work on the query letter that will hopefully sell this whole shoestring bonanza, lock stock and barrel, to the right agent.
      Serendipity awaits in the distance. I can almost see her. True, writing the letter to open the pathway to said Serendipity has been beyond brain frying… But I have to say after spending three weeks on the lettwe, I’ve gotten the layout correct. Now all I must do is splice out the excess. And tack on a front/intro and closing paragraph. My bio/resume should also be snap, I’m no Stephen King.

      Many thanks for the encouraging prose. Some rest should be taken. I agree. But quitting should never be an option.

      Thanks thanks and more thanks. For coming here, visiting, and give me much needed pats on the back to keep going.
      Your encouraging spirit propels me forward through what has proved to be been the most trying elements of book writing (selling) so far.

      O and om 🐱

  4. Wow, O and Om!
    Such trial by fire! Do you have agents in mind? Art for the public is a lot different than building a house for oneself, I think. I do get excited when I have visitors that haven’t yet seen all the tiles I made, and wood I lovingly worked. The hard part for me in the building was the people – especially men with no respect for women that could only hear “their way” not mine, their timing, not mine and I was dependent on them to help me with the parts I didn’t know how to do. Felt like a victim a lot. Grrr. I got thoroughly ripped off a lot, and crawling to the finish line was excruciating. But to put oneself out there with a piece of art is different in that there are a lot of inner private places in the heart that are lain (laid?) out there for all to see – friendly and unfriendly. The anticipation and probably some fear of how it will be received. When you believe so strongly in something and have given it your best, that should be enough. But it is not. The part that you thought would be easier, given you did what your muses told you to do, is not easier at all, but even harder! You must feel betrayed, cheated and very alone in some ways. It seems like this book totally tore you to the nub, and now when you need to rebuild yourself, there is way much more to do than you thought, just when your reserves seem already used up. I don’t envy you this process, OM, but I guess it is something your Soul growth needs, and we must always be loyal to our Souls. And it sounds like it is a book that needs to be out there. I personally can hardly wait for it. I know you won’t quit. I hear too much conviction in you for that. But I hear you how hard this is. I really do. I guess everyone is naive when they first start something like this. Otherwise, would there be a single novel in the world? I wish there were some way to help. I see on WP how many people genuinely care about you and I hope that is some comfort, as I am sure Odie is. You are so special. I haven’t known you throughout this last year and a half, but the short time I have, I have deep admiration and respect as well as very warm and fuzzy happy friendship feelings. Having written a book. Wow. I wonder how many novels have been started and abandoned at different hard places along the way. Millions. You did it. You got through the whole thing. I guess they are never finished how you might have expected. I guess it is just a knowing that it is complete as is. That is what other writers tell me. I used to think I could write a children’s book. But I don’t have the fortitude. She lives inside me, the protagonist, and I love her. I don’t think I have betrayed her because she does live….I don’t know. But you – you actually did it and I am so impressed. I know you will get there. I am sending you all the completion energy I know how to do. I am seeing you jumping up and down with happiness, the published book in your hands – although I don’t know what you look like – I kind of know your light body. Anyway, I hope you will take care of yourself in all the ways you know. Physically, practically taking care of your body, and lovingly taking care of your mind, heart and spirit.
    Big, big hugs Om,


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