What do you do when the doubts start flooding in? Do you wear your lucky number seven pendant? Do you use your special pen? Whatever you do, one thing is for certain, all writers have moments of self doubt.
I have certainly had a few recently. My second novel came out in February and almost instantly I began worrying about how it would be received. I’m on several bookish sites where reviews are published, which is great if the reviews are favourable. But one has to remember that a novel cannot please everyone. For example, I’m currently reading and enjoying J.K.Rowling’s ‘A Casual Vacancy’ , but even she received some terrible reviews when it was first published.
But reviews are not the only doubt that hangs over my head. What about the topic of sales? Will I sell the novel beyond my circle of family and friends? Actually, I have had some reviews from people I don’t know, which is reassuring especially when their reviews are favourable. However, I’m waiting for my first humdinger
which will surely come. How will my self-doubt survive that?
Another doubt is, will I be able to write one I feel is as good as ‘Attic of the Mind’. I say this, not to be conceited, but because ‘Attic’ almost wrote itself. The characters were alive and kicking, punching me with their words and actions. What if that was my best work and even that wasn’t good enough? But what is good enough? Why do we set ourselves unrealistic goals and judge ourselves against other authors?
Don’t laugh, but I do wear a lucky seven necklace and bracelet, plus a four-leaf clover bracelet. Have I achieved great success – not really – but I still won’t take them off! I use the same Parker pen to make notes and character cards. Yes, I do have my quirks and superstitions, but I imagine if you’re honest, you do too.
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Happy Word Flow One & All.