Wednesday, January 1, 2014

When my fear looks like a Clootie monster

Clootie monster (yes, it's in Book Two!)
Photo: DaveAllsop
Fear is something that I face often when it comes to my writing. I don't think it will ever go away, but I can use it to my advantage. In Susan Kaye Quinn's excellent Indie Author Survivor Guide, I connected so deeply with the section where she talks about fears. She says that when a project summoned her fears, it "only told me that I was on to something worth tackling." I can relate to that so well. The times that I am stymied by fear, I am convinced that the adversary wants nothing more than for me to give up, because whatever I am working on will have a profound influence on me, my family, or others whom it may touch.  

So, today I am confronting my fears.

What I’m afraid of:

That I won’t be able to write as well this time around.

That the book won’t resonate with those who loved the first one.

That I’m not a real writer.

The actual work.

That it will take me a long time to write what I want to.

That I will keep going days and weeks without seeing progress and regret the time I could have spent.

That I won’t write what I want to write, or what speaks to me most.

That I have to rely on other people before I can go ahead and write.

That the money and time I've invested won't pay off.


How to speak to that fear:

It’s okay if I don’t write fast.

Come on, I wrote the first one, I can write the second one, and the first draft should be crappy.

I don't need to depend on others for plotting. I'm creative in my own right.

I am a self-published author, which means that any deadlines I choose to enforce on myself are flexible, so I don’t have to stress about timetables.

Stephen King goes back and looks for themes to bring out after the first draft. I can do that too, and work hard to incorporate what speaks to me the most.

I am confident in myself as a writer, and I know that if I work hard, produce quality stories, and get them out in front of readers, that this will be a profitable business venture. But, more importantly, even if I never even earn back what I've put into my stories, I am constantly being paid by the satisfaction of creating something that never even existed, and doing something that is gratifying to me.

And most importantly, why am I worrying about going days without progress? What a waste! I need to forget myself and get to work.

What I plan to write and publish this year, in spite of my fears:

Book Two in The Geis series
Two novellas in The Geis universe, one from Aunt Avril’s POV, and one from McKayla’s.
The 2013 Book Blogger’s Cookbook (I know, it’s 2014, so sue me).
Kiera and the Moonflower (the first in a chapter book series for children)
The Birthday Girleen (a picture book for children)
A Reel Guide to Irish Dancing, with several smaller pamphlet by topics.

Now, off to make a dent in those fears...


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