In the beginning (when I didn't know any better) I thought I was the shit. Seriously. I was so proud of everything I wrote. I guess it's sort of like a kid mastering riding a bicycle by herself. I wanted everyone to look and cheer for me.
As time when on, I realized I really sucked. Like, sucking donkey balls kind of sucked. I didn't want anybody to see what I wrote. I wanted to quit. But somehow I forged on. Then I got a publishing deal. Then two. Then three. Then four and five.
But even after seeing four books, two novellas, and three short stories hit the virtual shelves, I still feel like a Big Fat Phony.
Frequently, I wonder why.
Is it because I'm falling for the stigma that small press books are substandard (when they're not)? Is it because I always feel like the underdog and that's a personal battle I need to overcome (probably so)? Is it because I haven't hit the best sellers list (really, I never thought I would anyway, so why am I flaking over that)? Is it because I still see that agent's feedback that I'll never get published and no one would ever want to touch my books floating in the back of my mind (yep, I still think about that way too often)?
I'm NOT writing this post to garner sympathy from you guys, but I AM writing it because I know I'm not the only writer/author/artist/creative type who's felt this way. Seriously, how many memes have you seen highlighting the low self-esteem of artists and how that means they're the REAL ARTISTS?
Why can't we believe in ourselves? Is it an attempt to avoid the dreaded Swollen Head Syndrome, lest we become blind to our own faults and lose the ability to accept feedback and hone our skills? Is it because the idea of sharing our work is TERRIFYING? Is it because we fear that someone will just rip our book/novel/short story apart, thereby figuratively murdering our creative self? Is it because non-best seller books or poorly selling books means failure?
I'm sure it's a bit of all of those things.
Honestly, all these fears and self-doubts are enough to crush anyone, sort of like when people keep walking on new shoots of grass--being constantly tread on will stifle growth and eventually kill you.
Yet grass grows, despite the odds. And so, too, do writers and authors.
I think it's because of the following attributes that all writers seem to have: Inspiration, hope, persistence, striving to improve skills, and, yes, that pesky trait of positive thinking.
I find that amazing.
I find that surprising that I'm a part of that group. I guess that means I'm a real writer and not a phony after all.
I don't know if any of this will strike a cord with anyone, but I hope it does.
Thanks for reading.