New beginnings usually come with a tinge of anxiety, whether it be good or bad there's always worry of the unknown. Doesn't matter if it's a lawyer studying for the Bar or a hooper working towards a G-League tryout there's always a thought that if the effort put in is worth it. At the end of the day, will all the work I put in pan out in my favor?
I think back to basketball and how that question rarely crossed my mind because of how determined I was to receive a scholarship and go pro. There wasn't another option, I never wanted to go to college other than to play ball. I didn't research, look, or apply, to any schools just waited for whoever offered a scholarship first.
So why not that same mentality with every other endeavor that I choose to go down. Whether it's being an established author, blogger, poet, podcaster, or father the foundation created by hooping should carry over to other areas. Truthfully, it does, but what I never realized was that the processes would be so different.
When training for basketball I knew exactly what I needed to do to get better, I knew which shots to practice, what ball handling I needed to improve on and so on. I never came in the gym and wondered what I was going to do, basketball is easy and precise when it comes down to understanding the process. Now doing it, of course is always another story.
On these new ventures though, the blueprint isn't as black and white as I originally thought. Writing, for example, in terms of being an author I've read books that say even when I don't feel like writing I should still force myself to put words on the page. I've done that, and read back over a day or two later and reconstructed almost half of what I wrote. So is it counterproductive to write when it's the appointed time rather than when I feel the creativeness flowing through my fingertips.
I understand that I won't feel the same amounts of productivity each day but there are some days when outside life has the mind boggled. More than anything I want to focus on my debut book but I often find myself drifting off to another imaginative place.
When I stepped on the court I forgot about everything and hyper focused on the game, practice, or any competitive activity at hand. Why not the same for when I'm typing my second act, it carries the same level of importance. As I'm sitting here writing now I think I've found a correlation.
Podcasting, poetry, and fatherhood mirrors basketball in respects of being a safe haven allowing me to temporarily block out the world. The common denominator is that these are acts of expression, and when I'm divulging of myself is when I'm in a zone. Like on that movie Soul, there is good and bad zones and I've been through plenty of both.
Sometimes in the midst of a poem or speaking on the podcast I tend to dip into either side because the expression is from a dark place. I can stay afloat because it's raw experiences and penning them out is therapeutic but when I have to be creative from jump is when things get foggy.
Although I'm using real life experiences of me and others to fill the souls of the characters in my book and short stories, as an emotional writer, it's difficult to detail created feelings. They come from a place but I still have to frame it into this character so that they represent the type of person I'm aiming for, and the thought that someone else has to understand it as well.
It's a little nerve racking, scary sometimes, creates a lot of doubt because it's just me in my head wondering if this is good enough. Looking at authors I look up to digesting that their older with more experience but still can't help but race against time. It's unnerving because there isn't a perfect process of how to go about being a successful author.
As I mentioned before, I've read about writing schedules too and the importance in sticking to them as best as possible. It's just not the same as walking into the gym and putting up 400-600 shots in an hour and a half to two hour time frame. I block off an hour and a half and the three paragraphs in the time staring back at me has me feeling inadequate.
I say I understand but I really don't, but I know that those three paragraphs are curated from a place of creativity. It's hard because there isn't a clear definition of right and wrong when it comes to writing an idea from my own mind, it just seems like there should be. I'm not a fan of going back and rewriting but every time I reread something there is always a tweak to be made. I just don't want to be stuck on the same chapter or in the same thought, but I wonder if it's necessary.
I once saw one of my favorite authors say it took him two years to write the book, which gives me hope but it is still unimaginable due to the amount of books he is releasing. I often wonder am I behind the curve or am I starting early, finishing my first book by 30 would be an awesome goal but I feel like I can be done by year 29.
Without a doubt I'm going to keep grinding and pushing towards my goal but success doesn't come without a little frustration. I know I've got some great ideas for books and short stories using real and raw experiences to highlight various idiosyncrasies in life. Some shunned some praised but the root of it all usually comes from the same source, people just need their eyes open to this fact.
I really believe I can make a difference with my words, whether writing or speaking I know that I can move the masses. I just have to keep myself informed reading books and exposing myself to environments of the upper echelon, that's where the decision making is. That will be my third act, after I get Elliott Quinton L.L.C off the ground and lucrative I can focus on this next step. I want to do a lot in this lifetime, help people and encourage positivity love and justice for those who need and especially for those who look like me.
Meeting someone new and trying to establish a relationship is nothing like basketball and more like writing, there isn't anything concrete. Each person is different, having to learn new triggers, stories, likes and dislikes, it's truly exhausting. Sometimes I feel like I've found the one then I realize something that reminds me of a past and a road I vowed to never again travel. With that though, each person is different so is it fair to judge? I'm not sure, but the next experience, I'm sure it will be a joy.
Amelia and Amara, daddy loves you.