In my work helping authors blast their blocks over the last few years, the same issues come up time after time.
- The fear of ridicule
- The fear of failure
- The fear of the unknown
- The fear of success.
#1: The Fear of Ridicule
This is really common. The best way to avoid being ridiculed for your writing is not to write anything at all. Our unconscious minds protect us from harm by inventing loads of ways for us to avoid being ridiculed.
Signs that this is happening in your life are:
- Being a busy fool
- Loads of half written manuscripts, chapters or ideas for blogs
A classic trigger for this might be a teacher marking down an essay you wrote at school.
The simple way around this is to start writing and ‘publishing’ small bits of work and discovering that you don’t get shot down in flames.
The good news is there are loads of really good and supportive places online to do this – such as the Six Sentences Social Network where you tell a story in just, well, Six Sentences.
If you feel particulary creative, you can also try a Six Word Story in the Hemingway style – “Baby shoes. For sale. Never worn.”
You can of course use your own blog or even Twitter a story out 140 characters at a time.
Local writers groups are also a good place to find your feet. There are also loads of short story and poetry competitions out there.
The main key to dealing with this fear though is to see all criticism as positive. By using glass half full mentality for example, you can take feedback from readers and use it to hone your work so that, when it does come out in print, it will be both error free and more readable.
Next week: The Fear of Failure.
Image by tomsaint
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