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Saving Fish from Drowning

 

Yesterday I wrote about being frustrated and stuck. I also wrote about the well-meaning advice of “chin up” or “this too shall pass”. I wrote how none of it was really mattering to me right now. How I was stuck in rut. There’s something daunting about facing the prospects of being washed up at 40. It’s a real attitude destroyer.

Without looking for any form of inspiration, I came across a series of lectures from the TED Talks series. One of the people on my Facebook page – and I don’t promote this blog there at all – posted a TED Talks video on World Building and I only watched it because it was about 5 minutes long. I figured I could pause the litany of woe in my head that long at least.

And so I watched it. It was interesting. As someone who aims to write Fantasy fiction one of these days the whole concept of building the world and it’s myths and legends admittedly freaks me out. I look at people like Terry Pratchett and his Discworld and I think “how in hell am I ever going to do that.”

The short TED Talk video was inspiring in that it gave me a couple of steps I’d never thought of in relation to building my world. I’ve copied and pasted the video below, so if you have a few minutes, give it a watch.

After watching the above video I started bunny hopping through various TED Talks videos. There was one about Faking it Until You Become it, that I thought was awesome & one by American author Amy Tan who talked about the belief of Buddhist fishermen –  how they are not supposed to kill anything but have to ensure they can feed their family – and how they “save fish from drowning” and that the fishes death is an unfortunate side effect. I thought the story was lovely. And a great analogy for creativity.

There was something about all those videos I watched yesterday that left me feeling different.  Hopeful I guess is the only way to put it. Yes, I’m still 40. Yes, I’m still “uneducated”. Yes, I’m still unemployed. Yes, absolutely nothing has really changed since yesterday except for the way I’m looking at things.

But hopeful is probably the best way to describe how I feel after allowing myself to put aside the “whinge” for 5 minutes – that ended up being a couple of hours I guess in the end – and allowing some different energy to wash over me, as opposed to what was swelling up from beneath the painted on smile I’ve been wearing lately.

Here’s another TED Talks, this one by Amy Cuddy where she discusses how your body language shapes not only the perception of you held by others, but also the perception of you that you hold of yourself.

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43 year old Australian writer currently working on the first of a planned three book Epic Fantasy series. When he's not writing policy discussions, or tales of swords, Gods, and magic, he can be found making a mess in the kitchen, and turning perfectly good ingredients into crimes against humanity.

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