Thanks to Alex J. Cavanaugh for organizing and hosting this event every month. Go to his blog to see the other participants.
I signed up on this group when it started, and got kicked out due to non-participation. I simply didn’t post, so the kicking was justified. Somehow, after the first post, I lost steam. I try not to whine on my blog, and this group seemed to require me to whine.
A few months down the line, I’ve realized that if there is one thing about writers, it is that they’re insecure. Even the best writers are– and a look at some of the writers in the 200-0dd IWSG list validates this.
So maybe, it is okay to let my insecurities show once a month. After all, accepting that I have a problem is the first step towards solving it. (I’m well aware that insecurity in a writer is like vanity in a model, it will never quite go away.)
My current fear is I won’t be able to finish my first ever novel. I’ve been afraid of novels for as long as I’ve been writing. I’ve had several short stories published, dozens of them finished, and hundreds of pieces of flash fiction written, but I never quite gathered the courage to commit to a novel.
Well, now I have. And now that I’m in the twelfth chapter, I sometimes find myself paralyzed with panic. This book can’t possibly land on its feet after its gargantuan leap of faith. It is going to plummet into that abyss full of half-formed, shapeless things that perish without seeing the light of day. Unseen, unheard. Only I’ll mourn its aborted attempt at life.
I’m using this panic to jump-start my writing each morning, and hoping it would fuel the neurotic dash to the end of the next scene, the next chapter. By noon, I’ve calmed myself to a certain extent, and written 500 words or so. Sometimes that takes evening, or even night. At night the panic begins again: what if morning brings no new words, what if my characters pull a fast one again?
So far, I’ve given up once at 5 chapters– junked it all, and begun again. Now despite the panic, I have to hit the finish line.
I managed to learn swimming after more than three decades of being afraid of water. I can do this. Amen.