Last week I received a surprise package in the mail. Don’t you love surprise packages? They fill me with a sense of bounty and contentment because someone was thinking about me unbeknownst to me. My friend T, who I haven’t seen in awhile, wrote: I recently read this book, and it made me think of you and the struggles you have with your writing … Your friend always …
The War of Art, Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles, by Steven Pressfield.
I happened to open the book at random, and wouldn’t you know it, the page I landed on had a message for me, an exhausting message but a valid one: resistance is most powerful at the finish line. Lately I’ve been tiring of all this pre-launch stuff. It’s all I seem to talk about and all I seem to think about: Kilmoon tasks. Everything from getting the darn buy buttons onto my website (I don’t know where to start. Do I need to hire someone? Do they require Java-enabled websites, and is mine enabled for Java?) to the endless blog writing for the blog tour to finding an Irish fiddler for my launch party to designing and ordering bookmarks. (Remember: I have a day-job.)
A part of me thinks, why bother? I have no clue whether my activities will make a difference to book sales. There will never be a way to know either. I’m in the last few weeks before publication on March 18th, and my inclination is to let it all go — what will be, will be.
Then, I read “resistance it most powerful at the finish line.” The author reminds us of the Odysseus myth. Odysseus and his men were within sight of Ithaca, so sure they were safe they decided to take a break. During Odysseus’s nap (that would be me–napping right before the finish line), the adverse Winds — of fate, to my way of thinking — drove them back over leagues of treacherous seas, forcing them to begin again.
When the finish line is in sight, resistance, as Pressfield says, marshals us with one last assault and slams us with everything it’s got.
Something was sending me a sign, and I’m so grateful. I’m giving my efforts a final push–doing the best I can; letting outcome go. The War of Art reminded me that I’ll regret it later if I don’t push through to the finish line.