A few weeks ago, we introduced April, one of our new contributors, through her awesome girl on site post. For her next article, I asked if she could share on the topic of ‘fear’ and this is the goodies she came up with …
What if no-one shows up? What if I run into that person who hates me and they’re reminded of what happened and start talking about it all over again with everyone they meet? What if what I’m writing is pointless?
I hate this feeling of fear. It makes me nervous and not want to leave the house. I’d rather stay home and be anti-social than go meet up with friends and have a drink at the pub if I have an inkling that I’ll run into an ex-boyfriend or an ex-friend. Why deal with the drama? I’d rather be invisible online than pay for advertising just in case I’ve wasted my money and no-one comes to buy my books. Why be pushy?
In short: I’d rather be passive than actively drawing attention to my work.
What the hell is wrong with me?
Am I really that afraid to fail? To have the people I once shared my life with cause a scene? To just say “I’m a writer and if you’re into fantasy adventure, sci-fi, paranormal, or romance, I have books in each genre, check me out”?
Yes. I am.
I know it’s irrational and every other social media post that’s shared is all about letting go and being yourself and finding harmony, but the fear is still there. The fear, that little voice inside my head that whispers about all of the things that could go wrong, is loud. I start to doubt. I feel like I’m going to vomit. I sweat like I’ve been running five k’s in the middle of summer.
I cannot relax.
All I want is to slip into the back row at the theatre and let the darkness black out my life and problems as I watch a film where the characters overcome their fear and achieve their goals. Preferably with dance numbers and murder. But that only lasts for a couple of hours and the lights come back on and I’m back to being that awkward bundle of nerves.
I don’t want to live my life afraid that if I draw attention to myself, if I make a big deal of something and people know about it, that I’ll have an audience watching me fall on my face. So, deep breath, I am making plans.
If I want to be a recognised writer and sell my books, I need to get my work out there. I am going to hit the pop culture conventions. Set up a table and start pimping my work. I’ll be in Canberra 17th and 18th September for GAMMA Con, come and find me. I’m also assessing my options for attracting attention online that’s not going to cost me my soul (no, it won’t be a sex tape).
If I want to have a good time, I need to forget the people who are in my past. Who cares if they glare or start talking shit? I can walk away, I can go hang out with friends on the other side of the pub. I don’t have to acknowledge them. I guess it’s a good thing that most of my ex-friends have either left town or think they’re more mature and don’t go out dancing anymore. And the ex-boyfriends… well, my mates are there to back me up if one should be making me uncomfortable.
This has been a hard post to write. But it’s nice not to have to keep the bubbly online personality up and admit that I’m afraid and I have failed and I’m trying to do my best. It’s alright to be a complete mess and fuck things up. This is life; there are no rules. Fear is just an emotion and will pass, just like joy.