How Confident Are You (As A Writer)?

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*Note: I’m participating in the #Write28Days (February) hosted by Anita Ojeda. Click here if you would like tp participate. 

 

So, really, how confident are you in yourself as a writer and in your writing abilities?

Personally, I can say without hesitation that I have very little confidence in myself as a writer, and many times this lack of confidence stops me from writing.

How sad is that?

What’s holding me back? What am I really afraid of?

Fear of failure? Of what others think about my stories and poems? Fear of success?

What???

The only answers that keep coming back to me are:

I need to write.  I need to tell my story-in my own way.  The price is too high NOT to write.

Again, what??? These tell me nothing about what I’m afraid of.

Then, another answer rings through my head:

My writing has to be perfect. If I can’t get it just right with the first try, why bother? I’ll never be good enough anyway.

Oh…yeah…this one cuts deep.  I keep going back to trying to be good at that one thing. It’s the search that never ends. It all goes back to my childhood when my (hearing) disability made me feel inferior to other normal kids (because they’d thought me strange because I spoke funny, or heard things incorrectly and they’d laugh at me, or called me “booby” when I acted clueless to what was going on around me, etc.). Or when I learned I was slowly losing my sight at the age of 21 just when I was beginning to get a feel of what I wanted for in a career, and this diagnosis shook my confidence, no, it destroyed it, and I gave up any and all aspirations.

On the other side, people who’ve known me for most if not all of my life would tell me how feisty I was when I was younger, how much harder I worked at something when the others believed I’d never be able to accomplish, and I’d do just that, how the guy who used to call me names found out one day he’d pushed me too far when I shove him against a wall with a hockey stick (he never bothered me again after that), and on and on.  My own mother said I was the strongest person she’d ever known, and how I was an inspiration to her.

Now, I look at the mirror and I can’t see that girl anymore.

Where did she go?

But, the real question is:

Will she ever return? Is it possible to become that girl again? 

I can’t help but  to feel so lost. How did I end up being this lost? But, is that necessarily a bad thing? A quote I read some time ago came back:

Sometimes the only way to ever find yourself is to get completely lost.” – Kellie Elmore

I feel there is truth to this quote. I also believe that the path to re-discovering myself will be through writing; and in writing, I believe I will regain my confidence.

 

 

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7 thoughts on “How Confident Are You (As A Writer)?

  1. No one ever gets writing correct on the first try, except perhaps, maybe, Shakespeare. Advice anyone gives is incomplete, or it communicates little. When you write something original, not a commentary, not necessarily an essay, not criticism, but perhaps a letter, know you are writing and using your imagination. What comes from the imagination must be put down in full, if possible. Next, what comes from your imagination is imperfect. That is what editing is for – you have to use both your imagination and your skills learned in fifth grade English to make sense of what you have written.
    In all of art how many persons could imagine what the finished product was like and set it down. ONE, Mozart. I believe he wrote his late three symphonies in two or three months.
    You’re just like everyone else, including Beethoven, who had to edit, curse, scratch out, tear up from frustration, etc. He wrote the Ninth Symphony, but he wasn’t sure the last movement worked. That’s a perfectionist.
    I could write more because I have, but I’ll leave you with his.

    Liked by 1 person

      • That is also true, but remember most of Beethoven’s manuscripts had cross-outs when he had hearing and he had absolute pitch. Note, that Beethoven did not know now to multiply or divide well. So when 32nd notes came up, and sixteenth notes and even eights, he was adding number in the margins of the pages.

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  2. I have tears streaming down my cheeks, Carrie Ann. I relate to deeply to everything you have written here and I wish I had some great advice, but all I can say is what I say to myself…forgive the lulls. I think, even though we both have a lack of confidence, we both also know in our hearts that we are writers, that our hearts are inextricably meshed with the words. I need to learn to be more gentle with myself, and it sounds like you do as well.

    I love your writing and have since the first time I read your blog. I have actually been thinking for a long time of asking if you would be interested in doing a guest post on my blog. You could write anything you want, any style, genre or length. It can be about Ushers or not. There is no pressure, just give it a thought and if you are interested, you can contact me through Twitter.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Carrie, I was looking for blogs about writing and your posts struck a chord. I can relate to the feeling of insecurity, the lack of confidence. But your writing is clear and rings true and if I, along with other readers agree, then you’re doing something right. Nice to meet you online. 🙂

    Like

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