Suicide Season

‘Ignoring your passion is slow suicide. Never ignore what your heart pumps for.’

  • Kevin Claiborne

Let’s play a game of Russian Roulette.

You and I are seated at a table in a smoke filled room; there’s an old six shooter positioned perfectly between us with a single round floating in one of its chambers. The heavy aromas of mildew and fear cling to your skin causing you to perspire. We’re alone. There’s no one here to save us; the only entrance to the cell is destined to remain locked until only one of us remains. You’re scared. So am I. Our lives have been reduced to this moment where we’ll play a game of chance to see who survives. Nothing else matters right now. It’s just you and I.

There’s a coin beside the gun. We’ll flip to see who shoots first. I pick it up and use my thumb to send it spinning through the air. You call heads. It lands tails side up. I shoot first. I pick up the gun, spin the barrel and stare you dead in the eye. It’s nothing personal. We just lucked out you and I. Our only chance of survival is to have the six shooter’s hammer strike home while the weapon sits in the palm of our hand.

My arm lengthens as I draw down on you. Time slows. Your blood thickens in your veins, your heart rate triples in a desperate attempt to push it through your body. Your hands are clammy. You’re freezing despite the humidity in the room. What do you think about in this moment of absolute fear? What decisions do you live to regret? How many passions were left wanting before you found yourself locked in a room with an irrational writer and a gun?

The answer should be none. We should be living every day to the fullest. Regret should be just a word in the dictionary. But it never is. We humans are creatures of hindsight; we are forever bound to look back at moments and note missed opportunities and failures.

Did you fail to chase your dreams? Or tell your lover how much they mean to you? Were you disappointed that you didn’t invest in those risky shares that ultimately paid huge dividends? No matter what you thought of in your moment of fear you did have regrets. At some point you settled for something other than your true passions and now when your life flashed before your eyes you wished you’d never been so foolish.

You ignored your passions and committed slow suicide. The final scene of your self-sabotage was merely a crazed writer with a gun. Every single sacrifice you had made prior to you and I being locked in a room was what lead you there.

It’s a loaded statement I know. To say that you are committing this form of slow suicide is sure to anger some; and it should. When Kevin Claiborne coined the expression he wasn’t trying to make his audience feel good. He was trying to piss them off. He wanted readers to sit back from their desk, or rise from their armchair and say, “Screw this guy. I’ll show him who’s ignoring their passions.” He wanted anger and emotion. He wanted you to rise and stop settling for less than you deserve. So do I.

It’s why I locked us in that damn room. It’s why I put a busted old six-shooter on the table and told you there was a single round in the chamber. It’s why I ground back the hammer so that the round would never fire. I don’t want to kill your dreams. I want to piss you off to rouse you from your slumber so that you actually start chasing them.

The only thing standing between you and your dreams is the excuses and sacrifices you keep making. You’re comfortable and I get that. I am too. But this state of comfort is suicide season for anyone who dreams of becoming something more. My comfort comes in working a cushy job where I earn a decent wage for doing very little. I could sit here for the rest of my life and allow the flames of my passion to die. I could let the momentum with my writing fade until all that’s left is stone cold ashes of what could have been. Or I can douse the flames of creativity in petrol and watch it burn brighter than ever.

It’s easy to ignore a passion and to deny your heart the opportunity to accomplish what it pumps for. But to do so is a travesty; it is to commit emotional and creative suicide. Think back to those moments of fear when you were staring down the barrel of that shitty old six-shooter. Think of the regrets that haunted you. Remember that spike in your pulse as you fretted over an end that you knew was ultimately inevitable. Do you want to look back on your life and shudder at the comfort you achieved by allowing passions to die? Or do you want to be someone who set the world ablaze and turned a passion and a dream into a reality.

Commit emotional suicide, or step outside your comfort zone and follow your dreams. The choice is yours. You wouldn’t play Russian Roulette with an unstable writer and a loaded gun unless you had no other choice. So why do we actively chose to do so with our dreams?

Author: Chris Nicholas

Chris Nicholas is an author from Brisbane, Australia. He has published two novels, and is currently working on his third.

260 thoughts on “Suicide Season”

    1. I enjoyed this post. I struggled for YEARS with this very thing. But life has a funny way of calling you, pursuing you when you need it. I just waited a long time to face the truth. But, I’m doing it now.
      Good for you that you are embracing your passion now at your young age. Too many people wait due to some kind of fear or another.
      Thanks for liking my post, too.

  1. Hi Renegade Press,

    I absolutely love the sentiment behind this post of yours. It’s true that if you ignore your passion, and push it back, it can and will eat at you. You are right, go for your dreams now or never. Two choices and I am so happy to connect with an awakened soul 🙂
    Keep your posts up, very good things here,

    Victoria, Human Soles, X

  2. Your writing is beckoning. It makes heart skip a beat as the surrounding tenses with your so effectively and carefully chosen words.It hit the spot though. Not easy to pursue for your dreams, your passions they often conflict with the reality, to make everyone around happier first and also making family as the priority. Like I got a passion of sketching, can’t describe in words the joy to put out your imagination, your thoughts on paper..just like writing, but people often leave their passions behind because it doesn’t resonate with their actual situation. But still it’s really well written. I enjoyed reading it!! Thanks for sharing. Makes mind to think.You are a terrific writer. Definitely going to follow you. 🙂

  3. Interesting post. I suppose there are many reason why we do it. Money for one does not bring you happiness but it comes with great freedom and choices. Unfortunately I would say this is one of the main reasons people give up on their dreams. It takes great courage to play your game. Hugs Paula x

  4. When I realized my dream of becoming a teacher and changing lives, that is when I realized how happy I felt. Every day brought happiness and no regret. I dont say that I have been able to do it completely but I am trying to follow my dreams to my fullest!

  5. You end with a vital question: “So why do we actively chose to do so with our dreams?”

    For me, I guess I answered it in my poem “recovery”:

    i cannot leave the only thing I know
    for what is uncertain
    no matter how enticing
    or glorious

    and there it lies. I don’t allow myself to chase my dreams. I am my own barrier to life. and knowing this doesn’t resolve anything. only action will. and i don’t allow it. we can be real good at applying catch 22.

  6. Thank you Chris for pushing me to put down my own six shooter. Every moment I think about writing, I act on it, be it in a quickly jotted note or a page-long idea for my newest YA story.

  7. I came across you a few weeks ago and when I read this post in particular, it inspired me to make the leap of faith and stop hiding my thoughts on my life and this life, in journals and inside of me. I began blogging last week shortly after floating the idea yet again with the best guy I know – and the last time we talked about it was over a decade ago. He said then what he said a week ago: “Just write for yourself” and I do. I’m glad you stopped by and liked one of my posts. Thank you.

  8. I love the title of your post, Chris, and I like what you are saying, very original style! For me, motherhood was the accidental trap I almost buried my passion for writing in. But I don’t think it was a waste of my creative time, as I truly believe that bringing children into this world and raising them can be a creative work too! Of another kind! And I came out of it stronger and without all the fears I had before.

  9. You liked my post, so I clicked your blog. The title intrigued me, and so I clicked it. I read it, and now I feel guilty and ashamed. This is just what I needed. Thank you.

  10. Wow. This makes you feel inspired without feeling bad (which much inspirational writing does) Sucked me right in…
    I find it absolutely hilarious by the way that a writer and gun are the actors of choice, rather than, say, a psycho and a gun. 😉

  11. I really liked this post and how it developed. You write with commitment, clarity and passion. It also lacked the preachy feeling because you connected with the reader with understanding. I feel the post should be called Stop the Suicide part 1, and Part 2 could be the baby steps a person can take to turn passion into action, fear into action. I believe that Toastmasters has been the catalyst for many people to set aside fear and impediments and attaining personal dreams and living a fuller life. You may already know this from visiting one of the over 100,00 clubs internationally.
    I wrote a post called the five regrets, you may like it.

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