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“Don’t listen to those who say ‘you taking too big a chance.’ Michelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor, and it would surely be rubbed out by today. Most important, don’t listen when the little voice of fear inside you rears its ugly head and says they are all smarter than you out there. They’re more talented, they’re taller, blonder, prettier, luckier, and they have connections.” I firmly believe that if you follow a path that interests you, not to the exclusion of love, sensitivity, and cooperation with others, but with the strength of conviction that you can move others by your own efforts—and do not make success or failure the criteria by which you live—the chances are you’ll be a person worthy of your own respects.”
– Neil Simon
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One might think there is a theme emerging…perhaps these are metaphorical excursions, signs from the heavenly firmament to take risks, go out on a limb, out on a wire, kick open the cage, or at the very least, to walk a less certain and solid path.
And to that end, I am starting to think about packing for my writing retreat in Oaxaca, Mexico. What I am not going to pack is any expectations.
Yesterday someone asked me what I hoped to accomplish at the residency. I was deliberately vague with my answer because I really have no idea what might come of this and I don’t want to fix any outcome in my mind.
The time in Oaxaca may be where either something comes to life or I might simply, and finally, let it go.
I do not know.
I have no idea what spending three-weeks alone at a writer’s residency in Oaxaca is going to look like. But my plan is to “follow a path that interests me…” and I am doing it with the notion that I will not make “sucess or failure the criteria by which I live.”
It’s a good thing I’ve been doing the wobbly walk on those suspended paths…I think it will prove to have been good practise.