Top 10 Fears of Writers

Thursday, March 12, 2009
In A Writer's Book of Days, Judy Reeves shares the results from a survey of writers showing their top fears about practicing the craft. Here's the list:

1. that I'm not good enough; that my writing is mediocre or bad

2. that my work is worthless, boring, drivel, not clever; that I have nothing interesting to say

3. that I won’t follow through or complete anything

4. that I'll get stuck and nothing will come out

5. that I'll never learn the craft of writing

6. that I'll appear stupid or foolish; afraid of what people will think

7. that I'll hurt someone

8. that I'm a fake, lying, not telling the truth

9. that its waste of time

A tie for 10:

10. that it’s been done or said before, better

10. that I won't get published

Chances are, you've had at least of few of these thoughts yourself at one time or another. I know I have! We're only human.

With practice and experience, some of these concerns lessen, I've found. For the other fears, do what you can to convince yourself of the opposite truths. Just keep writing! You can't let any of these worries stop you from doing what you love.

--Marcia Peterson


Anonymous said...

So true!

The irony of it all is that the writing worries you have WILL prevent you from writing in the first place! IF you let them.

Kerrie said...

Actually, having a blog has helped me with a few of these. I'm writing more, so I get practice, and when people comment, it's feedback, which helps my confidence. :)

Anonymous said...

Kerrie, my blog has also helped me to write more and gain more confidence from the comments I receive. A second thing that has helped me break down some of my fears that are listed in this blog is to give myself time away from my writing. After distancing myself from certain pieces for a long time I come back to them and see parts that are stronger than I thought they were (and others that are weak and need to be redone).

Loren said...

This is a great list. Number 7 is a big one for me.

Whitney said...

Thanks for posting these. I struggle with a few of them myself, especially the feelings of mediocrity and the fear that no one would really want to read or publish my work. I have always enjoyed writing, and I've found that blogging provides a less threatening outlet of experimenting with my style while allowing for friendly comments and suggestions along the way.

Rachel said...

(Gasp!) I have had ALL of these thoughts! But I agree, blogging has definitely helped, especially when people comment.

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