|The scariest moment of our lives|
But there’s another kind of fear that’s more latent. You feel it at one point or another — when you want to pitch a story idea but think it’s stupid, when you want to tell someone how we feel but have a fear of rejection, when you want to take a risk but don’t want to face failure. This fear simmers underneath at all times, feeding off of your dreams until it takes over your decisions and ultimately your life.
I’m so flattered and honoured to be able to celebrate Wendy’s blogaversary here with you guys! OMG! Wendy is one of the most articulate, eloquent, and just super lovely bloggers I have ever had the good fortune to meet. This blog has kind of been a haven for Miss Lurker over here so I’m just going to try and step up with a post about fear and writing and things and then we can all wish Wendy many happy returns etc. So! A lesson in fear:
Fear manifests itself in many different ways for writers. If you can think it, somebody somewhere is losing sleep over it. Some writers wake with a start in the depths of the still night, only to start frantically checking our last email/blog/tweet/manuscript/text for typos (actually, I think maybe most of us do that one? I do anyway hehe) while others don’t ever make it to bed because they’re trying to establish just how edgy is too edgy in a children’s book.
The point is we all have fear.
Just as some people are afraid of stuffed giraffes and others afraid of toast in the shower, you get some real wackadoodle fears out there in the barren-lands of the unfinished WIP. None more so than the fear of failure. It grabs you as you pass the singing bush of querying, avoiding the hissing lake of broken words. And, if you let it, it takes hold. Recently I realised that I had been pricked with its thorns.
You see the thing about this fear is that it preys on our uncertainties. It latches onto us while we slumber, and only really begins to hurt when it’s burrowed in too deep. And the thing about this fear is I let it prey on my need to please people. I don’t think it makes you weak to want to please people. In fact, I think it makes me decidedly human. I want you guys to be happy and smile and for us to all enjoy things!
Having said all that this year I decided to change something, and so far it’s going just fantabulously! Having realised my apparent vice, I’m now making an effort to write what I want to and not what I think other people will love. I’m writing the stuff I want to pen. And maybe, just probably, I think there’s a reasonable possibility what I’m writing is good. It’s interesting. It’s different. And it’s absolutely me.
So! This week I put it to you, guys. Overcome those literary fears! Write something and enjoy the writing! Realise that a little fear can be productive, but a lot of fear can be creatively crippling. Remember that fear when we all started blogging/dancing/writing/ reading/walking/insert favourite activity here? Well that seems so tiny now, doesn’t it? And people like Wendy make blogging so fun.
Lesson: There will always be unknowns but writing comes first.
Difficulty: Pretty to very hard, yo.
Remember: Write for yourself, you are your own reader, and things aren’t so scary with friends.
What is your biggest literary fear?Congrats to Wendy and her awesomeness! Three cheers for this blog! I think having a blogaversary is a wonderful thing because it shows the world how long you’ve been conquering fears and writing for you.