I’ve heard the blank page called that. It stares you down, daring you to try something . . . and makes your efforts laughable once scribed on its hide, now black stripes on white. Maybe writing is like that–transforming something belligerent and intimidating into something different entirely. Rhino to Zebra . . . impression to image.
I often wonder if the rule of thousands holds in writing, too. An artist once told me you have to paint a thousand bad paintings before you get one good one, as she finished a little watercolor of the marina and breakwater across from the sandy strip where our children played. If the rule does apply, I’m awfully glad my materials are infinitely reusable.
As for my friend’s work, I wanted to beg her for that little picture . . . good or not, I thought it beautiful. Obviously, my standard of success with paintings varies widely from hers.
What do you do to tackle the rhino?
How do you subdue him?
How successful are you?
How often do you write?
How often do you feel successful?
What are your measures of success?