Do You Want To Test Your Tolerance To Pain?

All You Have To Do Is Take Up Writing Every Day

  • Suffer significant cuts that required multiple stitches on my hands, arms, and legs.
  • Cut the tip of the thumb on my right hand off working at a chicken shack (really, I did).
  • Tear the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments on my right knee.
  • Get stabbed in the head by a kid wielding a paring knife.
  • Burn a quarter-sized area on the palm of my right hand with molten plastic which stuck to the skin and caused second-degree burns.
  • Slice a finger on both hands with sharpened mulching blades as I attempted to install them (some of you may have read about that incident — The Barnett Curse remember?).

Unless ignoring it means I may end up dying.

Because I’m still here talking to you I guess we all know how those disasters turned out, right?

My lovely wife is the same way with furniture and broken toes and the backs of both of her hands and doorknobs. Over the years, she’s suffered more swollen toes and bruised hands than I’ve ever witnessed.

None of them.

The pain of trying to establish a career as a writer is like nothing I’ve ever dealt with before. Not the physical side of it, unless you want to count the pain of my aging arthritic fingers, but the emotional roller coaster anguish and self-doubt I experience almost daily.

Wow.

Yeah, yeah, I know. Nobody said it was going to be easy, but d*mn, this career path I’ve chosen for myself is driving me crazy. One day I’ve got a ton of people reading and offering compliments and sentiments of praise the next day, not even crickets.

Art Garfunkel and Paul Simon?

I now know what silence truly sounds like.

I really have to confess, the highs of where I am in my career right now are simply not compensating for the multitudes of lows I continue to experience.

Even as I’m talking to you folks today, I have no idea how in the h*ll I’m managing to do it. Each day, I find a way to gird my loins (my favorite line from the movie The Devil Wears Prada) and crank something out.

Quality over quantity P.G., but still find a way to hit the quantity goal as well P.G.

More, more, more, more.

Step it up and notch. Get your career heading up.

Up, up, up up.

No dummy, you’re not supposed to be going down.

Down, down, down, more down.

Up and down like a pogo stick on steroids, zipping up the string like a yoyo and then spinning right back down again.

Oy vey!

Every day lately, it seems as though instead of feeling good about where I’m heading, I feel absolutely horrible about where I currently am.

I just keep on writing.

It’s a message I’ve sent out to all of you folks time and again, and not patting myself on the back here, but it’s d*mned good advice.

And yet.

This seldom up, mostly down, how in the world can it possibly get worse than this career of mine, is starting to grate on my everloving last nerve.

I need to pick me up.

Sure, I can continue to write with a promise to myself I’ll just do it one more day; I’ll give it one more day regardless of how bad I feel at the moment. Just one more day, and if things don’t turn around, then I’ll just shuck it all.

An interesting thing about this decision of mine.

It is only now, I realize how high my emotional pain tolerance has to be as a writer. There is no more self-ravaging, spirit-demoralizing, emotional-wreck-creating profession in this world than being a writer.

In the end, what it all simmers down to is if you really want to test your emotional pain tolerance, then, by all means, become a writer.

It just happens to be the best career in the whole, wide world.

Thanks For Reading

Let’s keep in touch: paul@pgbarnett.com

Written by

A published author enjoying married Texas bliss. Dog person living with cats. A writer of Henry James' stories. Featured In MuckRack. Top Writer In Fiction.

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