Twenty years ago I felt the same when I wrote a small guide book to my favorite hiking, biking and skiing trails of Idaho that I mixed with a little local history. I quietly worked away at 4:00 am in the early mornings for a year and a half typing on an old electric typewriter in the dark with a cup of coffee before heading off to my day job.
On weekends I plodded around the woods mapping and scouting telling no one. I tracked every reference . My background research found old unknown mountain stories from the past. Stories of solitude that I could easily relate to. In my own quiet seclusion, my personal endeavor was safe.
It was my unknown and my secrecy that kept me from the personal embarrassment of failing–not finishing a project I started. If nobody knew there was very little risk of public humility if the project wasn’t finished.
This time it’s different.
Webster’s defines collaboration as working together with someone to produce or create something. This time I’m no longer the one man band I was before but will have to depend on the expertise and willingness of others to share in this new project.
How to walk the fine line between ones personal life and personal public exposure? Perhaps we live too much in a world of fiction where we can easily interpret news stories from the web and television, advertisements, video games and so on into our own ideas. Transparency and truth is part of our human nature but is often clouded by social and cultural expectations. Not fearing but understanding the two is where this three year project also begins.
This time on my desk next to my cup of coffee there is a small picture frame a friend gave me with the words of Don Miguel Ruiz. They are simple affirmations:
Be impeccable with your word
Don’t take anything personally.
Don’t make assumptions.
Always do your best.
Simple words of common sense.
More later . . . .