Like characters, plots, scenes, story lines, different fears too reside inside a writer’s mind overflowing with ideas. Though these fears exist right from the time we put pen to paper (write that first word or type it), they raise their ugly heads when we start querying.
Everytime there is a deathly silence from agent/agents we have queried these vicious monsters of fears raise their ugly heads. I feel these fears are obstacles created and thrown along our paths by forces unknown to us, to test our mettle, to firm our weakening determination and belief and to strengthen our resolve to stick to the path chosen by us and make us have a firm faith in our stories.
These fears come in different forms:
- Fear of choosing the wrong subject. A subject that is hot now may not even receive a lukewarm response by the time we are thorough with the various drafts and rewrites and ultimately find a publishers/agent and the book finally gets published.
- Fear of not doing justice to the main character. A weak character is such a let down.
- Fear of not doing a good job where plot, characters, story arcs, dialogues and settings are concerned. There will always be somebody left dissatisfied with our story/books.
- Fear of not getting an agent. What if no agent likes our stories?
- Fear of the book not finding any home (publishing house) even though the agent is on board.
- Fear of the editor wanting major rewrites that we may not be happy about, or chopping parts that we considered crucial or important. That is after the book has been placed with a publishing house.
- Fear of being trashed by critics on whose words hang our writing careers. (If a critic is having a bad day, the result is a bad review)
- Fear of readers disliking the book. ( That is a major fear)
- Fear of the first print run being unsold. (Another fear that haunts)
- Fear of not being given another chance to redeem ourselves. What if publishers and editors are scared to give us another chance?
- Fear of failure, of being unable to rise up to our own expectations?
With so many fears surrounding us, it’s a wonder we are able to put pen to paper. Indeed it’s a brave soul that battles these fears to emerge with words that not only make sense, entertain, but also bring joy into someone’s life.
Which fear or shall I say fears do you face or have faced in your writing journey? At this point in time I am facing quite a few of these fears. How do you capture these fears to write day in and day out? It will be of great help to each of us if you share your experiences and how you handle these fears and stop it from messing with your creativity.