Last November I participated in #NANOWRIMO, the month-long challenge to write a 50,000 word novel by the end of November. I came nowhere near that goal as I was not ready. It was something I joined almost last minute. All was not wasted though. I ended with a good start. I had the first few chapters written and had lots of notes together. As the months passed by, I eyed my notes folder and considered opening my files on my laptop.
Something’s been stopping me though. After all this time, I think I’m letting my fear of taking on something new block my writing. I found myself frozen, afraid to take any steps. However, simple words from a great writing friend was enough to encourage me to keep going. The words? “You can do it.”
Yes, we say that to anyone trying to accomplish a goal whether it’s scoring that first goal or conquering an exercise routine. However, those simple words mean so much more than encouragement. Writers often support each other and demonstrate faith in each other. That is just the thing we need when our self doubt wants to take over. That paralyzing self doubt.
I saw a meme the other day that pointed out many successful people (such as Disney, JK Rowling and Hershey) that have failed and if they stopped the world would be missing Disney stories, Harry Potter and Hershey’s Candies.
After reflecting on these things, I feel ready to take on this new adventure of finishing that novel of mine. The hardest part is those first few minutes when I’m convinced I have nothing to go on, however when I push through it, I’m always glad I did. Sometimes I accomplish chapters at a time. Other times I only accomplish a few notes, blogging and marketing. What I do know is that I feel I’m past that paralyzing fear. I have learned a few things during this time. The most important lesson is that even if I doubt myself, even if what I wrote is terrible, it’s important to keep going. There’s time for editing later.