Monday, November 29, 2010
I WRITE THEREFORE I AM
FEAR NUMBER ONE:
You're not really a writer/author just pretending to be one.
Tracy O Hara blogged about, the fear of being found out after she wrote her first novel and sold it to Harper Collins. I think she called it the fake author syndrome. She said that a lot of authors fear that the first story or novel was a fluke and that they will be found out that they are not really writers. I remember when I wrote my first story. It flowed out of me completely formed like water rushing down a raging river. I read it after finishing and said, "this is pretty good!" Immediately after, the doubts kicked it. I wonder if I'll ever be able to write a story like this again? Man, this is good. Did I really write this? My BFF is constantly telling me, Melissa you are a published author. How many people can say that? She's so good for my confidence.
Then came the comments.
"Honey, this is good. Did you you write this yourself? It's kind of dark though." It's suppose to be dark. It's dark Urban Fantasy. (Grumbling to self)
"I love it! Your openings always draw me in and make me want to read more. You've have a bit of cussing in here though. Maybe a bit too much. But, right here, I think she should cuss." (She's a killer, she doesn't make nice.)
FEAR NUMBER TWO
Maybe my stuff isn't good enough.
I wondered the same thing when I turned in my first story. Raven's Transformation would have never been published if I had not been pushed. Even if your stuff isn't good enough right now, that's what revisions and rewrites are for. That's why it's so important to have people you can trust to give you honest opinions on your work. When my first story was published, I had a beta reader and friends critiquing my writing. I took some of their suggestions and revised to tighten and improve my story. And, surprise surprise, a small press publisher thought it was good enough to put in their anthology.
FEAR NUMBER THREE
I'll never get an agent. The competition is tight.
Well, my friend Marcia Colette and my crit partner Talitha have both landed agents that now represent their work. Marcia recently sold her first YA novel which comes out in October. It's called THE SPIDER INSIDE HER. I don't believe that luck has the final say on whether you become a successful author or not. I'm a firm believer that hard work and not giving up and persistence has more to do with being an author than anything else. J K Rowling said her Harry Potter series was turned down at least eight times by publishers. Bet those publishers are wishing they had taken her manuscript now. Harry Potter has turned into a world wide phenomenon and made J K Rowling the first author billionaire.
These are some of the fears that authors and writers have to face. The only way to confront them is head on. You must write. Not only must you write but, you have to be brave and let others read your work and revise, reword and rewrite. The final step for any writer who wants to have their work published is to send it out into the world. You must submit your manuscript, short story or whatever it is that you write to agents, editors and publishers.
The publishing market like any other business is going through some tough economic times like any other business is right now as evidenced by decreased sales, major changes at the big publishing houses and shifting of major players. One thing that won't change is there are still and always will be opportunities for well written stories.
So, I continue to write not hoping but, waiting for my opportunity to sell my first book or land an agent.