Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Confidence Quote of the Day

“Confidence is an intellectual chameleon who has learned how to drink the water found in a mirage.”
Vince Mooney


  1. Vince your 'confidence' quotes are funny. And I guess you're talking about people who are confident with no right to be. But speaking for myself, I know confidence is a constant struggle. There is nothing more lonely than the writer's life. Very little more fraught with self-doubt, second guessing, slings and arrows.
    So we are always battling that. We fight for bits of self-confidence.
    I have 28 books in print. I have a Rita and Christy final pin. I have 2 Carol Awards and multiple finalist pins. I have earned enough money to support myself now for years with my writing and still, honestly, almost every day, I have moments where I feel like I'm getting away with something. Moments where I think editors are 'falling for it' when they contract me. Moments when I wonder when my readers will come to their senses and realize I don't have a clue what they ever saw in me.

    This isn't me being silly, I really feel this way and most authors do. I think that struggle is part of what drives me, keeps me writing, searching for the next story. I've heard REALLY hugely successful authors say they don't know where the next story is coming from, if they'll even write another one.
    So, yes, maybe Bonnie and Clyde suffer from over confidence.... :) but a lot of us out here don't. Maybe you need a series of quotes on self-doubt.

  2. Mary, you nailed it 100%

    I know when I worked sales, the "fake it til you make it" bravado was a huge lesson. You had to imitate success until you were successful.

    So that confidence a lot of us "show" is the "fake it til you make it" within.

    I don't worry about confidence, though. Ever. I figure if God's happy with me, then I'm on some sort of write/right path. That doesn't mean I don't question my stories, though. Just this morning I read one that's nearly done to make sure it didn't STINK TO HIGH HEAVEN because this has been a crazy month around here.

    And strangely enough, it captivated me so I was happy. But I didn't know it would captivate until I took the hours to sit down and read it word for word... because I wasn't one bit confident that it would work.

    But it did.

    And if that next contract doesn't get accepted, technology and modern times have offered me a different track, and I love that. Like any person in sales/arts, I love having some control over what happens with my work. So the fact that we can spread it out over several venues?????

    That's a confidence builder right there!!!

  3. Hi Mary:

    Each of my confidence quotes tries to show one aspect of confidence. Confidence has a thousand faces. In fact, I have a quote coming up about this. When I thought about it, I quickly came up with dozens of quotes on confidence. This surprised me. I’ve never given this concept much thought and certainly not a philosophical analysis. Most people only see confidence as being a good thing. They think it is great to always be building their self confidence as if it were a good in itself. But when I thought about it, I saw many bad things that can come from confidence and that confidence makes possible. So what I am doing here is presenting many of the different faces of confidence and doing it in what I hope is a quotable way. No single quote is designed to capture the total essence of the concept. Confidence may be like a sponge – not the one creature that it looks like but rather thousands of creatures making up a colony that seems to act like a single organism.

    Of course it is natural for a writer to doubt her work. It’s like a painter spending so much time up close to the canvas and having knowledge of each errant brush stroke. The artist can ‘see’ many failings. The viewer, however, doesn’t see the painting being created. The reader probably won’t even notice the brush strokes at all unless they are pointed out.

    The viewer ‘sees’ to total picture. It’s how the painting looks from the distance is was designed to viewed that really counts.

    The writer is inside the tower clock seeing the gears. The viewer is outside and only interested in what time it is.

    If writers were not so creative they would not have so much self doubt. How’s that for a quote? : )

    Thanks for you comment. It has stimulated several more confidence quotes.


  4. Hi Ruth:

    You wrote:
    “So the fact that we can spread it out over several venues?????
    That's a confidence builder right there!!!”

    This points out the difference between ‘confidence in’ and ‘confidence that’. With more options to publish, ‘confidence that’ a book will be published is enhanced. However, ‘confidence in’ our ability to write or in our talent may not be enhanced, in fact, success may make us feel like we are even greater charlatans that we previously thought.

    ‘Confidence in’ has more to do with how we are wired than our the extent of our talent; while, ‘confidence that’ is more a factor of the laws of probability.

    Confidence may be more like grace than anything else. It may be a gift from God and not the creation of man.

    When are we going to get to read that new story that didn't stink and in which you were well pleased?


    1. Vince, you're too literal for me today!!!! I have some of Meg's Allegany Fudge for you to try... here you go... You eat while I talk:

      This book is slated for next August. It's part of the Big Sky Continuity set in Montana and I'm book 2 which is delightful I've gotten to research cowboys, ranching (I love Ivan Connealy and Mary Connealy because they always steer me right... get it??? STEER ME RIGHT, LOL!!!!) :) And reading it I realized that it's utterly charming and fun and western. Like writing Red Kettle Christmas (which I love beyond words!) exploring a western is just so much fun.

      Back to confidence: You're right, confidence in knowing something can get done because the ability is available to anyone and everyone is one mode of definition....

      But that inherent confidence? The thing that folks might be born with?

      I don't know about that. I know about work ethic. I know about staying the course and pushing through and not quitting. Those are lessons I pressed upon those unsuspecting innocent Blodgett children...

      Most days they thank me, LOL! But inner confidence isn't something I'm familiar with unless it's the confidence to know I won't quit.

      Because that's the part I can control.

  5. Hi Ruth:

    Literal is what I do – at least when I am thinking like an ordinary language philosopher.

    So when I said we may be wired for confidence I needed to be more literal. There is hard wired: instinct and condition responses. These are very hard to change. Then there is soft-wired: this is much like instinct but it is changeable. The wires are not set in stone yet. Usually the best time to change these is at an early age while the brain is still developing.

    When you see a two year old with great confidence, I think that has a lot to do with being hard wired in that direction. However, I also think it is possible to help build the soft-wired confidence with environmental considerations. How much of confidence is hard wired and how much is soft wired and how much is left over as influenced by changeable/programmable software – that’s a mystery of life.

    Note: I’m not talking about software when I mention ‘soft wired’. Software is meant to be changeable and often updated. It allows us to program our self to a unknown degree. This software has a lot to do with our personality as well. But as they say, easy come, easy go – live by the sword, die by the sword. This is the place where we say the “Serenity Prayer”.

    I can’t wait to see what you do with Montana and cowboys. You have the big city down pat. Remember: when you are writing about cowboys, you’re talking about riding for the brand. That’s important.

    Now I want to make some more maple fudge. I’ll wait until it gets a little colder.