Mon | May 29, 2017

Pointers to Publishing | Get over your fears for writing

Published:Sunday | May 7, 2017 | 5:00 AMCorine La Font

Fear is false evidence appearing real. This can come from a number of places like your mind working overtime and others' experiences and fears influencing you. No matter the influence, the end result is the same: you don't get a move on with your writing and you are stuck in the same place for years to come. How does that make you feel?

Instead of allowing this evidence to stop you in your tracks, it is more debilitating to not progress or move forward with your dreams or desires.

The first thing you need to realise and accept is that you don't have to be ready to write. What does readiness entail, anyway, and how long will it take you to get to that point? What is that point that you think will allow others to accept you?

Just start writing. You are not an athlete preparing for the Olympics, where you need to do a certain level of training to attain the gold medal.

You should take an interest and invest in yourself, should you really desire to take your writing seriously, by reading on the topic, especially the genre you wish to pursue, as well as attend as many workshops and seminars - anything that would allow you to build your confidence even further. Interact with other writers who can share their story and teach you better ways to handle your craft.

If you are stricken with fear, as you call it, then start writing a journal. It can be a handwritten journal or an online journal like www.penzu.com. Just keep writing daily and set a schedule that you keep, which is the key.

Next, you can decide after you have mustered faith in yourself that you are ready to share your work, maybe with your three closest friends or preferably with a family member. It is critical, though, that they give an objective and unbiased feedback and you should be prepared for constructive criticism.

 

SHARING YOUR THOUGHTS

 

Writing a blog is also a good start as this allows you to share your thoughts and writings openly, and it's like having a journal online, but this time, it is no secret, unlike penzu, which you can keep secret or share if you wish.

Blogs allow for others anywhere in the world to see your work and comment on it. This may be encouraging for you as persons who you don't know (yet) will be seeing your work and showing appreciation for it and even suggesting places you can publish or get known. Relationships can be developed and deepened, helping to build your confidence and get rid of the fears you once had.

Finally, you can choose some of your best work and submit it to a newspaper or periodical of your choice. Maybe, after you received positive rave reviews, you can select those for submission to the publication.

You just never know where this will take you. A plunge in the deep end will be also going after competitions for your blog or written work. Many competitions are out there. You just need to search them out and give it a go. Just know that some are paid and some are free, but the aim of all this is to get you to work on your fear, build your confidence, network with those in the industry and maybe, just maybe, develop a career in writing.

- Corine La Font is a speaker, coach, author and self publishing consultant. Check out her website http://www.helpdeskja.com and send feedback to corinelaf