Tuesday was a bit of a tough day as far as the composing was concerned, and it carried over into Wednesday. I did no writing at all after my sterling efforts on Monday, but was instead assaulted by all sorts of doubts and worries about my capabilities. An organisation who had intimated to me that they would be interested in performing one of my works to a large audience suddenly appear to be showing an alarming willingness to cover their backs ‘just in case’; there is an attempt going on elsewhere to muscle in on what I consider as some of my musical territory; and a singer has been publicly rather dismissive of one of my works, one which I think is pretty good.

So on Wednesday the seeds of doubt bore a little fruit and I packaged and sent off a competition entry, more in hope than in expectation, and then twiddled my thumbs while I didn’t really feel up to writing anything. I told myself at one point that I need to treat my writing like a proper job and do it whatever mood I am in, but today I just skived while the boss wasn’t watching. It has been a long, long time since I felt so negative about my writing, despite all the good things that have happened recently, but it brings home just how gossamer thin the thread that attaches a composer to confidence can be.

Enough already. Tomorrow is another day, and all that. Now that my desk is clear of the latest choral piece, arriving tomorrow at its competition, it is time to put the finishing notes on this orchestral movement/overture/whatever it is. With hugely helpful following winds I might be able to begin the orchestral score on Friday, but in reality I should think that Saturday will be the earliest day that might happen. I am already looking on to the next piece after that.

There have been a couple of other brushes with unwarranted unpleasantness over the couple of days, enough to remind me quite why I enjoy being at home so much in the company of my co-dwellers. At the same time, however, various chunks of work have also come in of late, enough to keep the wolf from the door and keep me in fizz or whatever my latest poison happens to be.

Let the doubters doubt, then, and let the decision makers dither while they make no decisions. Once one understands that one will never understand quite what makes some people tick things become much better all in all. The trick is not to lose heart and not to lose focus. Success, as the famous saying makes clear, is the result of small efforts made day after day.

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