A matter of confidence

Confidence in writing comes with the territory.  Being a writer is a bit like standing in the middle of a firing range - some bullets will miss, some will hit, some will hurt and some won't even cause a ripple.  Confidence is so fragile - you think you're full of it, but the reality is that it only takes one tiny thing to break it.

Sometimes what we write works, sometimes it doesn't.  Sometimes people get it, sometimes they don't. I wrote a recent piece for a competition, called Love Letter, and it didn't appeal to the judge.  I don't like writing weak stories - I invest as much time in a poem or flash fiction as I can.  Quality is important, not quantity, but also technical application matters too, so the old confidence went astray after my dalliance on the firing range.  I couldn't dodge those bullets!  Thankfully my writing mojo came back like a dog returning to its master.

There's a lot packed into these 200 words.  See what you think.

Love Letter

A dusty remnant lay on the kitchen table. A fragment of her life, shadowed for a lifetime, found buried in the attic of a house somewhere in the lush green hills of northern England, it now gleaned the light.

Celine Pierremont glanced at the sturdy oak in the courtyard. A love heart and initials - carved into the bark almost seventy years ago - had darkened but had not diminished. Nor had her love for the salient figure that had vanished from her life so long ago, snatched from the street by German soldiers looking for English spies.

Their love had been secretive and clouded by war, yet unchained by the guilt that it brought, and she remembered the feeling of her love, like silk ribbons and velvet over softened, supple skin; lost like time itself.

She looked to the letter on the table. Her lover had died in a concentration camp in 1942, a year after they had met and fallen in love, just before the letter was written. Celine had never known the truth, believing that their love was doomed.

Until now.

The letter brimmed with words of love, from the most beautiful women Celine had ever known.


  1. That's a beautiful story. I think you captured the genuine touch that an old love letter holds - that love in a time capsule.

    Confidence is a tricky thing. Some days, I can withstand the writing storms like a lighthouse, and other days, the waves are just too big. But even rolling through them, I know I must never quit. I think if it weren't for the waves, we would have nothing to push us to be better writers.

    Cheers to your mojo, A.J.!

  2. Thanks Erin.

    Fantastic analogy about the waves btw. You're so right, we need those waves to keep pushing us.

  3. You're right, sometimes it takes very little to dent our confidence.