I’m really good at negative self-talk (thanks, Inner Critic). Here are some things I’ve told myself about my writing, that I now know not to be true because hello, I have a novel out.
Caveats: (1) I had an awesome co-author, so I didn’t do it all on my own; (2) we didn’t go the traditional publishing route, but published it ourselves through Turtleduck Press, with help from professionals and semi-pros. My Inner Critic would like to have a field day with those caveats, but they don’t negate the fact that there is now a novel out there in the world with my name on it, and people are even buying it.
And so, the list of lies:
- You don’t have the discipline to be a writer.
- Your wrists can’t take that much typing anymore. (They can. I just rack up the words a little slower these days.)
- You don’t know how to edit a novel. (I’m talking the big stuff, structural editing — I usually flail around and get tied up in knots. This time, somehow, I knew what needed to be done and I did it.)
- You don’t have the temperament to edit a novel.
- You’re too afraid of failure to ever put anything out there.
- You’re too addicted to the Internet to ever put anything out there.
- You’re not a good writer. (I’m still and always learning. That’s different.)
- Your writing process is fatally flawed.
- You can’t be a writer and have other interests / a life at the same time. (I don’t have kids. But I do work full-time, have a significant other, and have several other hobbies that can be fairly time-intensive.)
- You can’t plan, write, edit, and publish a novel in a reasonable amount of time like real writers do. (It took nine months from the start of planning to when we published it. In retrospect, that wasn’t really enough time, but we did it.)
- You’re not a real writer.
- You’ll never be a real writer.
WELL ACTUALLY…I did it. And will do it again.
So can you.