A Blank Page

Staring at a blank page, contemplating subjects to cover, I wonder what others see when they gaze at empty paper, or the empty screen. In the past, I worked with students who saw an ocean so big they couldn’t possibly get across it. They quit before they started. Those are the students I help to get started by asking them to give their character a name. Just pick out a name and write it on the page. There! You see. The page is no longer blank and not so intimidating. Okay – is he/ she tall or short? Write that down too. Now we’re getting somewhere. Where should your story take place? Often this is the moment the student’s shoulders are no longer slumped, the pencil is upright, the brain is clicking.
When you wish to climb a mountain, it is daunting to look at the entire massive landscape in front of you. Look instead at the step in front of you. Take that one, then the next. Every once in a while, you should stop and check out the terrain, the weather, your course, but then go back to that next step right in front of you. Eventually, there you are, standing on top. Glorious!
Whether you write books, climb mountains, or face a new task at work, take a step, just one step, then another. How do you feel? Often, it only takes a couple of steps before there is a change in your comfort level, before it’s no longer intimidating.
I grew up in a culture of fear. I believe it was my father’s method of keeping his family safe. He wasn’t afraid of anything, as far as I ever knew, except the fear of something terrible happening to his family when he wasn’t there to protect them. When I was a teenager, I resented his ‘stay home and stay safe’ over protectiveness. I was never encouraged to get out and try anything. I rebelled. Now that I’m older, and hopefully wiser, I understand his wanting me to be safe was his way of loving me, but I still fight being intimidated every day. I still have to make myself get out there to try something new. I know others feel this way too, and to you I say, take one step – just one, now try a second. You can do it. We who feel the same fear are right there with you.

About Barbara K Tyner

A graduate of UCCS with a degree in English Lit., Barbara writes Children's Literature as well as mainstream fiction. Her popular children's series, The Badger Books, is co-authored with Barbara's daughter, Laura. Her first novel, "Wait Here, Wait There" deals with grief and Alzheimer's. Her second novel, Rhyaden, a middle grade fantasy released Nov. 2018. Gardening, exploring National Parks, Kayaking, hiking, and snow-shoeing top her list of favorite hobbies.
This entry was posted in climb a mountain, fear, Grief, Inspiration, over-protective, parenting and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to A Blank Page

  1. Gudrun McCollum says:

    What a heart-felt, honest and wise encouragement! Yes, do not look at the peak; it could be much too overwhelming. Look in front of you, walk a step at a time, and before you know it, you WILL have conquered the mountain!

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