I was recently speaking to a lady who writes every day and is working on her third book. She’s even gone to the trouble of organising beta readers for each one. That’s great, right? Yes, and no.
This lady is playing small by staying hidden. Yes, she’s written the books, but she’s letting her fear get in the way of publishing them, so she’s helping no one with her message. The excuse she’s running is that she only wants to be published by a traditional publisher, which would be fine if she was actively seeking one, but she’s not.
As an author and writer, you have a responsibility to share your work with the world to help those who may need your message. The information in your book comes through you, not from you. If you didn’t want to make a difference, you wouldn’t be writing a book; that’s what journalling is for.
I get that it’s scary to put a book out into the world. People might not like it, and that’s ok. I’ve been there and let it stop me once before. If you have the desire to write a book, it’s because someone needs to hear what you have to say in the way you say it. It’s selfish to keep that knowledge to yourself because of fear.
Writing a book is more than just about you. Yes, it can absolutely be a cathartic experience, but it’s bigger than you. Every book provides the reader with a fresh perspective on the topic covered. That’s where its beauty and value lie. No one else has the same stories.
So, if you come up with excuses about why you can’t write or publish your book, it’s possible you’re making it about you. Take a step back and look at the big picture. Connect with the reason you’re writing it in the first place and remember the people it’s for. How can you best help them?
You’re likely associating more pain to writing/publishing your book than pleasure. In my upcoming book Written, a technique I share is to make a list of all the things you’re losing or missing out on by NOT writing/publishing book. That will help shift the energy towards pleasure.
You can also create an avatar of your ideal reader and write the book for them. Writing then becomes more like sharing all the best bits with a friend to help them deal with their situation.
If you’re unsure if there’s enough interest in your topic, test the waters. You could create a simple website (WordPress.com is a free way to do this) and write blog posts. Alternatively, if you want some feedback about potential improvements, you could your post work on Wattpad.
How do you overcome fear and playing small? Post your comments below.
Cheers to your writing success!