I have always written. It’s all I want to do. And when I clear out the noise around me and stop absorbing all the garbage and hype and pressure around what I do, I feel better.
It is easy to get caught up in watching eagle-eyed for book reviews. It is easy to take even the slightest comment personally. I never take the good stuff personally, oddly enough. It is easy to be worried about contracts and agents and sales and visibility. That’s the way the world swirls around us.
I have to keep reminding myself that I will write even if no one ever gets to read it. I honestly doubted anyone aside from those closest to me would ever get to read Driftwood. I didn’t think it would see the light of day, the printed page. Of course, it could be a huge flop and I could go back to wishing that it never made it out of my Dropbox account. We shall see. But I write. I am writing another novel. It is important to me and I am being careful with it. It’s a little owlet that I am nurturing and helping to get stronger and one day it is going to shriek across the night sky. I may be the only one to hear it, but that just isn’t the point. There will be more after that and I will keep it up with no regard to BookScan rankings or blogs or reviews. I honestly don’t care if they all live in my Dropbox account forever.
I still write poems. Some I share, others I don’t. The truth is that I am a terrible introvert who forces herself to put on a game face every single day. It exhausts me. What energizes me and builds me back up is playing around with words, descriptions, stories. I live in my head.
I am rambling about all this because tomorrow I go out of town to record Driftwood as an audiobook for Audible. As I was packing up my bag, I started to get nervous and scared. What if this is all horrible? What if I am horrible? Then I started to worry about not having an agent. Without one I was feeling devalued, invalidated. That brought about worries about readings and being in public and being judged and reading reviews…
So I stopped. I stopped and silenced it all. I reached back to the core truth: I write. No matter what. And the noise isn’t important. None of the trappings are important. My words are important because they are important to me. I get my value from myself and the loving people around me and the satisfaction of creative endeavors.
This is a fun ride and I will not lose sight of that. Truth is, all of us are on a pretty fun ride (even when it seems exactly the opposite) and we have to hang on to that.