The demons of doubt roam freely in the brain of creative people. They jeer and challenge until the writer is left in knots, tangled so tightly in their critique that it is all nonsense and stuff that goes poof like a dandelion in the hands of a toddler. Crippled, full of anxiety, second guessing every word, the writer stops- sometimes for a day, and sometimes for forever.

I keep demon slayers on my desk surface, swords drawn, ready to slash to a bloody death any doubt demon that wanders by. Some days, they fight a good fight and lose, exhausted and damaged by the warfare for my work. Other days, their sheer bravado takes the day and I write like my fingers are on fire, the words flowing faster than I can manage to type. Those are good days.

“Finish the work,” we tell new writers. “Turn off the editor in your brain until it’s finished,” we insist, knowing full well that without that control, the story demanding its freedom will be forever enslaved inside the tunnels of your neuron synapses. And yet, there are days… there are days… Fight well, my protectors, you are needed.

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