Fear is recognized as the number one destroyer of many careers, businesses and inventions. And not surprisingly fear of failure is the greatest fear, for authors, a significant obstacle that stands between you and your goals.
More defined, writers are afraid of many things: poverty, obscurity, writing a dull book, writing a shallow one. Some are afraid their writing is too literate, while others fear that theirs is not literate enough. The list of authors’ fears goes on and on and is as varied as the writers themselves. It seems that every writers’ fear stems from the mother of all fears: What other people think of what they write. Fear of failure is an imagined threat – no more real than the boogy man under the bed.
When no one likes what you have written, you might become embarrassed, hurt, disappointed; hopefully not suicidal. Stop those fears right now. No matter how badly you feel, remember that your curiosity has been peaked and you have created something. Your writing will be forever drifting in that literary world, long after you are dead and gone. Be proud. Besides, you cannot please everyone. Not everyone will like everything you write – but some readers will love some of it. Writing, creating your own masterpiece (manuscript), and sharing your work is the first step. Pat yourself on the back. Your curiosity and imagination has come alive in your writing, so why do you care what anyone else thinks? You have given it your best shot and it is all that matters.
Tackling the fear of failure.
- identify fear whenever it visits you
- acknowledge fears without making them rule your thoughts, decisions and life
- focus on writing and what you’re writing instead of the results (in other words, focus on the journey, not the destination)
- replace fear with perfectionism
- don’t make things harder than they need to be
- do what scares you to conquer your fear
Creators of anxiety:
- Interviews can cause anxiety.
- Deadlines are not so much a fear as something that is hated.
- Reviews: you glow when reviews are positive. Emotional when the critiques are negative.
“Linda has published sixteen books. She blogs about the publishing world, posts useful tips on the challenges a writer faces, including marketing and promoting your work, how to build your online platform, how to get reviews and how to self-publish.”