December 10th, 2010. The day I cut the umbilical cord.
Nine months prior, I had a thought. Wouldn’t it be fun to just …
Later, an idea was conceived. Which grew into a lengthy three page outline, and blossomed into a beautiful white-and-black 88-page thesis.
After nine months I gave birth to “Mythic Archetypes: Welsh Mythologies in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings.“ It wasn’t perfect, a few things bothered me. There was room for expansion in certain areas, but it was time to let go after I finished!
It’s mine. My own. My precious.
Choosing a topic was a risk. It wasn’t the most popular subject to write about. Why would you want to write about THAT? While other graduate students were debating taking the comprehensive examination or reworking their critical theories about Joyce or F. Scott Fitzgerald, I chose to follow my passion. High fantasy. How could I merge Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings with some Welsh mythological research. What could I do different that hasn’t already been discussed ad nauseam? Could I defend my thesis? Was this even WORTH exploring??
We grow to love our creations. And hate them. I’ll never forget throwing books/papers on the ground tearfully screaming: “I’M NOT GOOD ENOUGH. I’LL NEVER BE GOOD ENOUGH!”
Then a few hours later I’d pick up my papers, rework a few paragraphs, and feel the delicious surge of accomplishment. A seductive thrill raced up and down my spine.
All agony is forgotten once you hold your newly created idea. That initial conception you thought oh so many times! The seed has long since sprouted branches and grown into a friggen tree! But now, that tree bears fruit and you can pluck that fruit and share it with people.
My labor of love.
Certain things didn’t completely sit well in the end. A few researched points I’ve discussed which could be reworked and tweaked. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Your creation is living after all, it has GROWN and evolved. But nitpicking little details can consume you.
So, I let it go. On December 10th 2010. Plus a few extra years.
Now, I’m going back. I’d like to rework some kinks I’ve been wanting to finish.
I’ve wondered about getting chapters published, or re-working the entire thing for a broader reading audience. Am I good enough for it, precious?
I find it strangely comforting going back after a few years and reworking chapters. I’d still like to finish writing my half-finished novel.
But for now I’m visiting with an old friend, whom I love.