No, this isn't going to be a nutty "chain yourself to the redwoods" kind of post. It's actually in reference to some writing I did many years ago, and my current reactions.
I first got the writing urge just out of junior high school. I was an avid reader of sci-fi and fantasy novels, and after devouring a few hundred of them I was convinced that even a young punk such as myself could manage to string together enough of a storyline to get published. (Ah, the folly of youth!) Beginning the summer after eighth grade I sat down with my wirebound one subject notebook and started on my epic. I had no specific characters in mind, no major plot arcs, just a lot of empty paper and ridiculous amounts of confidence.
After two years I finally gathered up what I had into a three ring binder and typed it out. It wasn't finished by a long shot, had only minor editing, and I'd shown it to only three of my closest friends, but I felt like I'd accomplished something great- over one hundred typewritten pages of my very own. I sat it aside for a time since I was busy with school and my bevy of extracurriculars, and didn't really look at it again until the summer after junior year.
My first reaction after skimming over the first chapter was to burn the whole binder on the spot and scatter the ashes- what a tremendous amount of tripe! It was generic, amateurish, and to my much more mature and ecologically conscious mind, the worst load of crap ever to have killed that many trees. I was incredibly ashamed. Had I really thought I could write a novel? (Considering it was my very first work and I was rather young at the time, I suppose I could have cut myself some slack. However, I've never been one to allow myself any wiggle room for mistakes.)
All I can say is thank goodness for blogs-now I can write all I want, delete it, and still save the trees.
[Aside: I'd originally deleted this post, but due to a request it is back on the site. (Thanks, Dave! lol)]