Realized something today. Actually, it was about 60 seconds ago, and I simply had to share this brilliant epiphany with you (whoever you are, dear reader).
So, just a bit ago Jack J. Binding, Writer followed my blog. It’s been a bit scary getting “followed” by various writers since I started tagging my blog entries. I’ve had a blog before, but I didn’t share it because I was, apparently, scared out of my ever-loving mind that someone would actually read it. My heavens, they would read it. I would have let my thoughts out for the world to see. I would be bare, vulnerable, PUBLIC. And – holy mother of all things holy and unholy and everything in between – I would be subject to criticism. Writing is precious. It is my baby. I didn’t want anyone telling me I have an ugly baby, alright? Keep it to yourself, thank you very much.
I don’t mean that. But I did. I used to. And okay, maybe I do still mean it just a little bit.
But here is the thing, and thank you Jack J. Binding for unintentionally alerting me to this fact: If I don’t get this all out of my head and into a place where others can read it and yes, actually INVITE readers into my space, I’m just keeping a diary. That act is not, technically, going to help me achieve my grand goal of finishing the novel and becoming a NY Times Bestselling Author.
Confession: A deep and ridiculous fear of criticism has kept me quiet for four decades. FOUR DAMN DECADES. That quiet is kind of lonely, to be truthful. And how terrifying it is to feel that you may not succeed at this one thing that has always mattered more than any other. So you just don’t speak of it. You sit with it, all alone and pondery and moody and broody. Turns out I’m really not alone at all. When you start talking, like-minded folks pipe up – not to make you feel less alone, but to say, “Hey, I see you. Do you see me?” Yes, I see you. I do. Thank you.
I’ve cut-and-pasted a particular paragraph that shouted at me just now, ripped right from the page of this blog post: Planning a Novel and Getting Wrecked
“I came to the conclusion that you have to write for yourself. If you don’t want to read the final product, then sure as shit no other fucker will. Create something you love first of all, everything after that is just a bonus.”
Create something that you love. I mean, it’s simple – but it’s brilliant.
That’s all. I just wanted to share this with you. Whoever you are.
p.s. I continued to read JJB’s post before I posted this just to be sure it didn’t have something horrific attached to it that I might have missed (who knows what I was worried about). Oh good Lord. He used the same “ugly baby” phrase as I did. Either I’m in love or I’ve found my people.