It’s That Time Again!

InsecureWritersSupportGroup2It’s the first Wednesday of the month and that means it’s time for another edition of the Insecure Writers Support Group.

This month is a little different in that the insecurities and anxieties are a little more real this month.

I have finally ventured into the world of publishing. An article of mine is about to be published in a local magazine. As a matter of fact, I believe the magazine is going to print today.

I spoke last month about the fear of success being cause for writer insecurity. This month I know it is real.

As my article goes to print I am realizing that more people will be reading my work and my anxiety goes up. This may seem a bit crazy since I write a few blog posts each week and have been for over six months. I’m not sure I can describe the difference, but there is one.

I think the difference comes down to the fact that I can frame this article. My words aren’t just out in the ether of the web but in black and white. I can hold them in my hand.

I can also walk down the street and watch someone pick up a copy of the magazine and read my words. This is the one that will be a bit surreal to me.

What do you say to someone who comes up to you and says “I just read your article.” And then they say nothing else. Outwardly, you just smile but inside you are screaming “AND??????”

This is a whole different level of insecurity.

IWSG: It’s Time for the Next Step

InsecureWritersSupportGroup2It’s the first Wednesday of the month and time for another post for the Insecure Writers Support Group.

The past month has been a struggle in all areas of my life, especially my writing. I think I’m trying too hard. I feel as if I have been going 100 miles an hour and finally crashed.

I’m discovering there are a couple of things that make me crash. One is fear of failure and the other, fear of success.

I don’t send my work out a lot but when I do it’s stressful, for me at least. I seem to wait and wait for the inevitable rejection. When it comes, my momentum is lost. I don’t stop writing, but I can’t think creatively for anything. And it takes a long time to send work out again.

Success, or even the hint of success, can do the same thing. All it takes are some words of praise and I am stuck. I can see the path in front of me but can’t stake any steps on it. Isn’t this what I want?

I’ve decided to make August the month I send in my work. I have a couple of flash fictions pieces I like, perhaps even three that are ready or nearly so. The process of submitting work is an interesting one. It is not as simple as sending an email with an attachment. Submission guidelines are a maze of terms to understand, along with polishing the work.

My hope is that I can document this journey through my blog. It’s such a learning experience and I can’t be the only one who struggles with this piece of the writing life.

This is the necessary, though scary, next step. Wish me luck.

Words of wisdom for anyone who is looking to submit their work?

Insecure Writers Support Group

InsecureWritersSupportGroup2It’s the first Wednesday of the month and, therefore, is time for an Insecure Writers Support Group post.

This is my first time participating but I really like the idea. All writers have moments of insecurity, some greater than others, and this is a way to share those insecurities. It is also a way to lend support to other writers.

I am no exception when it comes to insecurities and doubts. I actually sent a flash fiction story into a contest recently and it was rejected. Rejection can set me back a bit. It makes me not want to even look at the words I am putting out. I have a really bad tendency of not editing my stuff so I have thousands and thousands of words in raw form just lying around. Well, they are actually stored on flash drives but the concept is the same.

Writing for me is necessary. I journal every day. Set challenges for myself either on my own or with a group. I get up early each morning to give myself this gift. If I keep it in this realm, then I am okay.

Where I am not okay and where the insecurities come in is when I look at my work to edit and then send out.

This is often paralyzing.

I look at a piece of writing I’ve done, thinking at the time of the writing that it isn’t too bad, and realize after a cooling off period that it is awful. I believe there is little redemption in the piece and I put it back down not even attempting to complete any editing or revision. I also realize this is no way to achieve my goal.

I often wonder if I can actually do this. Can I actually be a published writer? Hemingway is credited with saying something like it takes 1 million words to learn your craft. For me, any words that show up before that million word mark aren’t any good yet. I have a long way to go.

Some days are good. Those are the days that the words flow and I can see what I am aiming for with my words. Other days I wonder why I bother to stumble out of bed to show up for the muse.

I do this every day because I love it. Though I would love to be published, I don’t believe I can function in my life without writing. It has become necessary to me. I work at dealing with the insecurities and just keep going.

I am glad for the Insecure Writers Support Group because it reminds me that I am not alone in this. We all have our moments but this gives us hope.