So, why do I care???

Every now and then, we all need to have a reality check with ourselves. Sometimes, we’re hit with truths we don’t want to admit. I’ve already confessed the fact that I don’t care too much for vulnerability, but I know that it’s necessary.  I’ve also had to come to terms that as much as I would’ve LIKED to believe that I didn’t care about what people thought about me, deep down, I did care a little. I wasn’t sure why I cared so much. But I did know it had become a bit of a hindrance in my writing.

I had a few story ideas that I hesitated to write about. Why? Because of the nagging voice that wondered the following (this list is not all-inclusive, mind you):

“What will people think?”

“Will they like it?”

“Will they assume I writing about someone in particular, or even about myself under and claiming it to be “fiction”?”***

“Will people *gasp* and clutch their pearls?”

***QUICK RANT: If I say my character attended my alma mater, then I must be talking about my roommate. Most of my stories are based in Detroit, my hometown, so I have to be talking about a relative of mine or someone I’m friends with, or perhaps dated. Let that character have natural hair – DEFINITELY ME!!!! (Even though I’m not the first or last person to cut off their relaxer). Once I wrote a short piece about a woman that was ill and even my hubs looked at me and asked me if I wanted to tell him something after he read it. This is why it’s called fiction, folks. It’s made up. Not real. Entertaining fabrications that I’ve created from my overactive imagination. For play play. END RANT***

Still, I would second-guess my writing and eventually stall because I cared so damn much.

And I really shouldn’t.

Because what they think shouldn’t matter.

Sometimes, I’ll go through my older writings and go, “This was good. Why did I stop this project?” Oh yeah, because I was too effin’ scary to keep it up. That’s right.

How could I expect to be successful at this thing if I wrote in order to please others? Left things out or skirted around it because of fear of how it would be received?

Simply put, I can’t. Because just like the issue with being vulnerable, it was just one more thing holding me up. I had put myself into a box in order to avoid getting my feelings hurt. I understand now that hurt feelings just might be necessary. Or I could just be blowing things out of proportion (my imagination is hyperactive).

So, lesson one in my reality check: It’ s okay to be vulnerable. Lesson two: Write the story. The whole story. Pearls may be clutched, but then again, maybe not.

Advertisements

6 comments

  1. Oh lawd, this is me all day! My biggest thing is the reviews. Right now I can’t stop looking for them or at them!

    I have a lot of good feedback on my work as I am writing it, so I’ll be happy to release something but it is the after effects that get me. Not to say that some of my work isn’t crap but everything can be worked on and made better.

    Also, my new philosophy in life (and I’ll say, this is for people who really want to have a career as an author) is to always have another book coming soon! You can’t do that when you’re always kicking your work aside.

    You got this!

    Like

    1. Yes, let’s not even get into reviews! It’s a nail-biting experience, even if all of the feedback from the betas and the editor has been positive.
      But that true, we always have to be working on that next project.

      Like

  2. GIRL! So, let me tell you a story really quick. With my first release, Love and Other Things, I had it written, and ready to go, but there was some cursing, and some sexy, etc. I started panicking, like OMG, what will my friends and family think?!

    So… I scrubbed it all out. And I felt empty, and depressed, and I didn’t even want to publish it anymore, because the sailor-mouthed wild girl had been sanitized. A beautiful first expression of love got washed out. Little nuances that made the characters real? All swept away in an effort to make sure nobody was offended.

    And it made me sick to my stomach. So I said, you know what? Screw THIS! I’m going to tell the story I intended to tell, the way it intended to be told, naysayers and critics be damned. You have to be true to yourself as the writer, as the creator, or you”ll always find a reason that your project isn’t good enough, when really? It probably is!
    Of course you care what people think about your writing, because you want your readers to enjoy it, but everybody has an audience. Find yours, and anybody who doesn’t like it…. find a different damn theater!

    And for people thinking you MUST be writing about them? Oh my God, self-absorbed much? I guess they think they’re the only person in the world like them, lol. Anyway, I think I’ve taken up enough space in your comments at this point, but seriously, don’t let idiots hinder you from your dream!

    Like

    1. LOL at “some sexy”! I haven’t received a lot of “who are you REALLY writing about” in quite some time, but as I was writing this post I remembered it. I do believe that stories can be motivated by life experiences, but this is not “The Best Man” where I’m writing stories about my friends and changing some names. 🙂
      Absolutely, staying true to the whole story is important, even if that story includes “some sexy” and a little (or a helluva lot) of cursing. 😀

      Like

  3. Great post, Dahlia! That’s exactly the right perspective. You write for you and not to impress other people or have positive comments back. Even bestselling authors get negative comments and reviews – everyone’s taste is different and everyone’s understanding of what makes good writing is different. It’s important to always stay true to yourself and your writing no matter what. Otherwise, like Christina says, you will find yourself disappointed in your own work, and that’s even worse than a few negative reviews.

    Like

    1. Thanks Christie! It took some time to get that my attempts to write to other people’s expectations were a roadblock. It wasn’t being true to the story.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s