The title is directed at myself, before anyone gets upset.
I feel pretty awful again. Really depressed. I couldn’t face applying for a law library job today, which are more or less the only viable jobs on my list to apply to at the moment. I won’t be able to volunteer for a week or two at the new volunteering opportunity I was trying to set up because I procrastinated in responding to an email and now people are away on holiday.
I tried to work on my novel. I’m doing a lot of planning as I’ve never written fiction at this length or complexity before. It’s slow. It’s hard to tell what’s good. I also wonder if I should start writing, even if I throw it all away later, just to channel some of my enthusiasm and avoid going off the boil (so to speak). The novel has an autobiographical element, but it’s stripped down in a way; I wanted to write about someone with all my issues, but there were just too many of them for it to be believable or to have space for a plot and other characters. Actually, I genuinely nearly wrote it with only small roles for other characters, because when I think of things in my life, I genuinely think about my interests and issues long before I think of other people. And they said I’m not autistic… (autism from autos, ‘self’ because of self-absorption.) Still, I feel more enthusiastic about writing than about anything else.
I do wonder if it’s worth it. I wonder if I’ll ever have anything substantial published professionally. I wonder if I’ll be as successful as a writer as I was as a historian or librarian i.e. not very. But I don’t have a lot of other options right now.
As I was writing this post, a rejection came in from the publisher I sent my non-fiction Doctor Who book to. I will keep on submitting it, but it has knocked my already wobbly confidence. Plus, I told myself I would only date again if I got a job or a book published, despite what my parents and my rabbi mentor said (that I should date right now). I do get lonely, although these days I think marriage would be just as difficult for me as being single, whether I was living with my parents or not.
I’m struggling with CBT. I’m supposed to get to shul (synagogue) tomorrow morning as part of my homework, but I suspect I will be too depressed. I’m also supposed to be talking to strangers (e.g. shop assistants), but I haven’t, partly because of social anxiety (which is what it is supposed to deal with), but also because autism means I have no idea how to have a conversation. I want to push myself to be more social, but I genuinely don’t know what I could say to someone, beyond a vague idea that British people make a lot of small talk about the weather.
I feel sickened by the anger in politics in general, online and especially online politics. Treating ‘politics’ as a wide concept, not a narrow part-political one. I like to hear people and make my own mind up about things. I don’t have much time for “calling out” or aggressive posturing. I should probably go and live in a cave or something. I just want to hear people’s stories. I realised that’s what the explosion of thoughts I’ve had lately about writing novels is about: telling stories, the stories that don’t get told, my own and other people who I can empathise with in some way (which is tricky with autism, which makes empathy difficult, but that’s another story – autistic empathy issues are arguably more about not knowing how to react to other people’s emotions rather than not feeling them, so not necessarily such a problem for a writer, but this is controversial).
I’m going to watch Doctor Who for the first time in ages to cheer myself up. Star Trek, Batman and The Avengers are all very good, but when I’m very depressed Doctor Who reaches parts other programmes can not reach. I picked Warriors’ Gate, because I wanted Tom Baker and a surreal, disturbing environment.
4 thoughts on “You’re So Vain (You Probably Think This Blog Is About You)”
I think there is far too much calling out and aggressive posturing in this world.
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Try not to be too disheartened about the book rejection … most writers who succeed usually have to deal with multiple rejections at first. Did they offer any comment or reason for their lack of interest?
No, I think I got the standard “Thank you, but this doesn’t meet our current needs” email.