Wednesday, October 3, 2012

My Biggest Fear...



This is my second IWSG post! Thanks, Alex, for providing such a healthy outlet. :) 


Sometimes I think I’ve got a little Jekyll and Hyde in me. When I need to, I slap on my “conference persona,” where I’m not afraid to walk up to any agent/editor/author/person, and strike a conversation. Say the right words, be professional, create relationships. All to help progress me on my writing adventure.

But inside?

I’m terrified.

Not shaking-in-my-boots terrified. I can’t remember the last time I ever felt nerves (that happens when you grow up on stage) But terrified I’ll never be good enough.

It’s one thing to have the persona of being confident, to do all the right things, say all the right things, but it really does just come down to the writing. And I’m scared out of my mind I’m not smart enough, clever enough, will never have the brain power to create something timeless.

What’s funny, is I can look back and see each small success, each step of progression, where I’ve come leaps and bounds. That in and of itself should be confidence enough that I’m growing, learning.

But I’m still scared.

Because with each step, we’re putting ourselves out there more and more. First, it’s just the step of doing it. Writing. The only fear that comes from this is the fear of disappointing ourselves. Then it’s coming out to the world. Blogging. Telling everyone that you’re a writer. Voicing your thoughts and ideas for anyone to tear down.

Next it’s putting yourself out there to be torn apart by betas. To see your work ripped to shreds only to have you pick up the remnants and piece it back together. AFTER THAT there’s the whole querying/submission thing that is an adventure all on it’s own. THEN there’s actually having your work being out there on shelves. And the fear of what people will think.

The list goes on, and all of this kind of fear I’m okay with. But the only thing I really struggle with, is if I’ll ever truly be “there.”

I try to display confidence in all my actions, just because if I make myself believe I have what it takes, then hopefully it will come to fruition. Positive energy to the universe and all that. (Though I actually had an anonymous comment once where the person said I was over confident, and needed to tone down my confidence level!) Er… I honestly laughed. Because they had misread my post completely.

Long story short, I’m scared. But I’m going to continue with my Jekyll and Hyde confidence façade until I master the fear. And besides, what are IWSG posts for? For the other 30 days of the month, I can be as confident (on the outside) as I want. ;)

Red. Head. Out. :D

**And those of you guessing from the post below why I got my ticket, Tiana was right! I know, I'm boring... 

58 comments:

  1. Fake it 'til you make it - that is pretty much the way most people do it, I think! :D You know I have every faith in you! <3

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    1. I agree! Fake it 'til you make is exactly what I was thinking as I read this. You're doing a great job making others think you're confident, eventually you'll believe it too. :)

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  2. Well at least you don't have take all those steps at once, and can do them one at a time :)

    Allison (Geek Banter)

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  3. I think we all feel this way to some extent or another. But really we have to keep pushing forward and work harder until we get there. Great post!

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  4. You may not see it, but I'm terrified as well. I'm not at all a public speaker, but I know if I want to get the word out, I have to do it. Then again, doing something you love makes the shakes a whole lot easier to deal with. :)

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  5. You can only be courageous when you are afraid. **don't roll your eyes** lol.

    I learned NOT to let critics define me--positive or negative. But it's hard. You are not alone. =)

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  6. Feel the fear and do it anyway :) I'm sure once you've conquered all the steps you speak of, the next ones will be "will my next book be as well received as my last?" and so on and so forth. I also wonder if I'll ever get "there", but I have a sneaky suspicion the goal posts for "there" move up every time you get to it! I'm sure it just means you're doing it right! :)

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  7. I tweeted that someone who has red hair and whose name rhymes with Organ Whammy JUST GOT THE BEST AGENT EVER!!!

    Yeah, I'm slowly letting the cat out of the bag.

    You can never trust me with news like this. I'm terrible.

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  8. OMG...I just saw your husband was an X-Games gold medalist. Not to disparage your agent thing, but could you please post more hot pics of your hubby.

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  9. I was totally about to write what Kyra wrote. It's one of the great pieces of advice I've come across.

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  10. I know how you feel...but as long as the fear isn't keeping you from accomplishing your goals I think it's okay to be a little scared. I don't think it's something that'll become easier even when we have those things we desire (agent, book deal, etc.).

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  11. Yeah, it's not easy. Ever. I used to think once an author was established, that the worry would end. But look at the reviews for Rowling's new book. Wow.

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  12. You know what they say about confidence - fake it until you make it!
    The only way you'll never get there is if you quit. And you don't strike me as the quitting type.

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  13. You're not alone, Morgan. Years ago I watched a CBC interview with my idol Margaret Lawrence. She was sitting in her kitchen with rows of canning on the counter behind her. She said much the same thing. She felt unworthy. Her books were required reading in university, yet she felt unworthy. But she wrote from her gut, to the extent that some tried to have her books banned.

    Years later I saw the same interviewer visiting Margaret Atwood at her home on the lake, and I thought I want to have her life, her success, her confidence. Today I am a publisher author living on a lake in central BC, feeling many times very unworthy. I keep thinking they'll discover the truth, I'm a fraud.

    These insecurities are part and parcel of what it means to be a writer. Every writer feels this way. Fitzgerald felt this way. Hemmingway felt this way. And if any writer tells you otherwise, they're kidding themselves.

    The fear never goes away. You just learn to mask it better.

    Happy IWSG, Morgan!

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  14. Hey, Morgan,congrats on getting an agent!!! That has got to help assuage some of your fears, right?

    And honestly, I don't know if insecurity is such a bad thing. It seems like a really confident person might lack some of the introspection needed to be a great writer...

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  15. I thought I would be intimidated when I made my pitch and had a crit appointment with two High Profile authors at the conference I attended. But when I started talking about my book, I forgot about being nervous. I surprised the agent with my answers, mentioned a couple of industry blogs I follow and got a referral. Both of these talented people were fun to talk to, interesting and helpful. They helped me move forward. I try to look at each small goal as another rung up the ladder.

    How can you fear anything? You're a mother.

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  16. If fear is pushing you forward, it's a good thing (unless you're facing zombies). If it's pushing you back, why?

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  17. I admire your conference persona, even if you are inwardly terrified. I've been to several conferences and am just slowly starting to feel more comfortable at them.

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  18. I think half the battle is acting confident. Soon you start to believe your own act and viola, you feel sure of yourself.

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  19. It's called survival. Some have it, some don't. fakin it has nothing to do with it. Shamy baby (lol - I sound like some boxing coach) you got all the makings of the greats! Just keep doing what you are doing! I love ya!

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  20. I think everyone is terrified inside. We all have our game face and our ability to execute it varies widely.

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  21. I have good intentions. I want to do that, but it's hard too. I need to feel like there has to be a connection. But sometimes we just gotta take a chance and put ourselves out there. Easier said than done though.

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  22. Been there, girl. AM there quite often. I think if I keep pretending to be confident 100% of the time, someday I will be. Ya think it'll actually happen? LOL!

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  23. Don't you love anonymous trolls? They say some of the strangest things... I think we've all been where you're at though - so you're definitely not alone!

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  24. I suspect that a lot of 'confident' people are probably secretly faking it some of the time, what else can you do. Great interesting post and inspiring - we can all have a go at 'faking it'!

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  25. I think even pretending takes courage, getting yourself out there despite the fear, that takes guts. I think we may have more confidence than we give our selves credit for. Right?(:

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  26. I think most of us think we're not good enough. We're our own worst critic.
    You're doing great, though!!! ^_^

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  27. Yes, the best thing to do is look at your small successes and be proud of them no matter how scared you are. I'm scared too even though I don't write books. I don't know what my writing future is gonna hold for me but I gotta wait and see. That's all we can do, for right now and it's my least favorite thing of being writer. You're not alone, Morgan. *hugs* :)

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  28. Organ Whammy, lol. Laughing!!! And I feel fear like this all the time. I totally use the confidence-face to cover it--and I smile way too much too!! You're so fab, Morg!!! :D

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  29. You'll get there. Look how far you've come! :)

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  30. I can totally relate to this. Most writers can. Heck, most people can, regardless of their job.

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  31. In a way you can look at this as a good thing. Always something there to make you work hard, get to the next stage, and who would ever want to stop growing? It's usually the case that when authors become over confident in their abilities, the quality will decrease. We need that fear to push us on!

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  32. I think everyone is afraid of not being good enough at what they do. But one can always try to move forward and improve. :)

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  33. I suspect the Jekyll and Hyde thing will never go away. Use that insecurity to drive you to even greater things.

    But always remember that you have a book out there on the shelves, which makes you so much farther along than most of us. I can only hope to reach your level some day. Of course by then, you'll already have a couple more published books under your belt.

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  34. I agree with Stina. I think many writers can relate to this!! So glad to see you around IWSG!

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  35. Ha, I'm so the same way. I can act confident if I need to, but when it comes to my writing, I don't feel confident always.

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  36. Being scared proves one thing - you are still living! Be scared, because when you get through it, in the end you'll be a stronger person *hugs*

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  37. Doesn't take courage to post an anonymous comment. Ugh. There's nothing wrong with being confident. I try to project confidence, even when I don't feel it. Especially when I don't feel it. I'm not as good at it when it comes to being at a conference, but I'm learning bit by bit.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

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  38. GGggrrrr Morg:)

    I was about to comment like, 12, 14 hours ago and then I saw the last line about THE TICKET.. so I had to go find the scoop... lol!!! ... and then I got sidetracked (as you do: "Papa? Paaaappaaaa??") and well here I am.

    All I want to say is that you are probably THE (not one of the) but THE most positive Bluddy (blog buddy) I have out here in the Blogisfear.

    Seriously.

    And, oh looooook what happens (anyone seen Morg's bio lately :)~ when one has a positive attitude :)

    PS... Like Michael said earlier, congrats on signing with an agent (but I'm OK re. showing me pics of the Hubster :)

    Sunburned. Head. Out.

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  39. I hear you! But I agree that you need a facade of confidence to make it, regardless of what you're really feeling. And how silly, saying your over confident. I never got that out of your posts.

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  40. I feel the same way. But you're right, fake it as best you can and keep doing what ya gotta do!

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  41. Well I'm still doing the whole writing part...but I know what you mean. That alone is scary enough :D Also, I just noticed in your bio that you have an agent! Did I miss something or has that been there for a while? I'm the last to know with things like this :P

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  42. Oh man, I'm so with you on this part. I just tell myself I'm not nervous to talk to people in the business and to put my work out there and so far it's working. But someday it won't. Someday I will realize I'm scared. Probably sometime around March 21st(ish) haha.

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  43. Congrats on signing an agent Morgan! That is great news! I cannot believe that you feel this way, you always seem so positive! Keep smiling!

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  44. Oh we so need a support group for insecure writers! It takes enormous courage to put your work out there. Congratulations again Morgan on being repped (and by such a wonderful agency as the Red Fox Literary Agency! Wow!)

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  45. I wish that I was actually confident. Sometimes I feel that I exude a persona of low self-esteem. But I try to put on the facade of being a happy, confident, I-am-the-coolest-person-in-the-world person.

    But...

    I definitely am not. Grrr. But I'm a work in progress. That's life though. Thanks for sharing your feelings. Hugs.

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  46. You are lovely and amazing. We ALL feel this. I promise you. Even John Green.

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  47. Hey, Morg,

    I hear where you're coming from... We all fear that our work isn't good enough... BUT guess what? IT IS! I know there are flaws, even the greats have flaws .... BUT .... guess what? THEY ARE STILL GREAT! Humans are flawed beings. Once we come to grips with that, then we are halfway there. SO lighten up. Don't worry. You are GREAT and FLAWED. THAT, sweets, is what makes us FABULOUSLY human. AND I, personally, wouldn't have it any other way.

    Just think how BORING life would be if everything we said and did was perfect. I am falling asleep at my computer keys now just thinking about it.

    But, as you said, take that "once a month" hiatus from fabulousness if you need it.

    HAVE AN INSPIRING, INSANE, INDECENT, INNOVATIVE, INDUSTRIOUS, INDICATIVE, INDECISIVE, INDESCRIBABLE, and any other "IN" you can think of this weekend.

    BIG HUGS ....

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  48. My biggest fear of putting myself out there to the wider public is probably getting bad reviews. I normally like to read the negative reviews of a book first, just to get a balanced perspective, but I don't think I'd have the courage to do that for my own books.

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  49. Congrats on getting an agent. All the best!

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  50. fake it till you make it.
    congrats on the agent!!!

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  51. I like the idea that confidence is not the elimination of fear, but acting in spite of it. And congrats on getting an agent! I hope you've spent the weekend celebrating!

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  52. "IWSG is how we survive the fear of getting ourselves out there," says the girl who has yet to put herself out there.

    At least I know, when the time comes, IWSG will be here for me.

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  53. I know exactly what you mean! Everytime I read something that amazes me I am attacked with my own self doubts that scream I'll never be that good. BUT I pull up my big girl panties, apply my fake confidence mask, and attack the world with style! You can do it. I believe in you, dear friend.

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  54. I feel this way, too. I squash the feelings down and go on. I have to in order to achieve my goals. Great post. We can all relate.

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  55. Yeah, its scary to put your stuff out there. But it is a part of author growth. I'm sure you will do fine Morgan.

    .........dhole

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