Yesterday I sent off my manuscript to some Beta Readers for the first time. This isn’t the first time that I’ve sent my current book to somebody else; it’s the first time that I’ve sent any of my writing to somebody else.
I have probably the obvious reticence about sending something that I’ve created into the outside world, but I also feel that I will now be judged on my whole life changing plan. Everybody knows that I’ve changed from a safe career to a completely unsafe future, where my potential for success rests upon my ability as a writer.
Why people create
All artists generate an idea that was nurtured in their mind, and create a physical expression of it, mainly for the purpose of showing it to somebody else. Your mind is like the untouchable part of who you are. You spend most of your time hiding what you truly think about people, and you are often embarrassed by your own thoughts in many situations. So the idea of creating a little window to expose your deep, dark secrets is frightening.
But this is what I want to do. I want to be seen by others, I want to show off… just as long as they all like it. Receiving the praise and the adulation, and the idea of entertaining people sounds fantastic. I am realistic enough to understand that it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but the fear of no one liking my tea is quite daunting.
My Life is in the Dock
I have changed from a very certain, conventional existence that I hated, to a much more unsure, potentially fulfilling, lifestyle. Everyone that knows me will have an opinion of that, and if my first book is received with a sharp intake of breath, then the pressure will mount.
I am in this for the long run, and I will continue to write, so I will not take the criticism as terminal, but if people don’t like it then it will definitely feed the inner demons.
I am also a coach, and I would definitely advise a client to positively visualise their goal, in my situation. This helps, and I do partake. I’m sure that my own feelings are not as bad as some who are crippled by their own amount of fear. But nonetheless it is still there.
I will carry on regardless. Like I mentioned at the beginning, I have already sent them, so I will now just hold my breath for the next month, waiting and going blue.
Is this a common problem, if so let me know?