Welcome back to another monthly post in my Novels and Narrations blog series! In this series, you get updates on my writing in all facets: from the celebrations and excitements of the high moments, to dealing with imposter syndrome, hopelessness and rejections. Thanks, as always, for caring about my work as a writer and supporting me in this way. ❤
Let’s see how the month went, shall we?
So, as you may have seen on Twitter, I have…been struggling, currently. And not just because the hecticness of life has made it so I have been unable to write or work on my novel at all these past few weeks. Instead, it’s namely been with confidence. As a writer. Where I’m at in my “career” as a writer. Hell, if I’ll even get to have a career as a writer, at this rate.
I know that’s not unknown or unnormal. Hell, if you look through my writing post archives, you can see I talk (and experience this) a lot. I think, this time around, I am just feeling a little more disheartened than usual.
As you know, I’ve been working on BLOOD PRICE for ages. Literal years. The past few drafts (six, seven and eight), each time, I felt really confident about that draft. Each time, I sought feedback to confirm that confidence. And each time, I have been met with both praise and criticism. Needed criticism, let me clarify and confirm! And, before we go down the self-pity road for too much longer, let this be crystal: I am so grateful to every single person who offered criticism. Not only for their honest feedback, but their respect to tell me what they believed and their time to work on my story to begin with. I NEVER want that to be in doubt.
Yet, for some reason, after this round, it felt worse? Or hit harder, at any rate. Perhaps it’s just because I am so eager to query. I WANT this book out in the world; to be ready. Before, I felt confidence in my materials–book, query, synopsis and all–that it was ready. Yet feedback yet again tells me it’s not. And, instead of rolling up my sleeves to tackle it with vigor and determination, this time, I’ve just felt…lost. Stuck. Defeated. It’s like my mind is telling me I’ll never get there. No matter what confidence I feel, I will never break into an industry that is so subjective. No amount of work or stubbornness will get me there.
Yet, that’s the lie, isn’t it? Because you can get there. People have! People will! Hell, one of my great friends and writer partner Joyce just published her book!! A person I know has done it!
However, the imposter syndrome is stronger, right now. Perhaps it’s tied with grad school and academia and being told I need to be “literary” when I could care less about that. Perhaps it’s the fact that I haven’t had time to create at all, so my past confidence feels fake. Maybe even the very fact that writing goes on the back burner before gaming or my day job makes me feel like a fake writer; like I can’t give enough or sacrifice enough to “earn” it, so I don’t deserve for my dream to be published to come true.
It’s not a fun mindset to be in, friends. But it is my current mindset. One I’m hoping to break of, very soon. How? I’m not quite sure.
Thanks for reading a more melancholy post this week, friends. My fellow writers, what are you working on? How can I support you? Let me know in the comments and thanks for supporting me in my own journey and reading another installment of Novels and Narrations! ❤
Well Tempered Proof says
I don’t know the right people to get Blood Price into print, but I CAN tell you this: I believed in your story a number of drafts ago. I even saw plenty of potential in the earliest draft you sent me for beta reading. You’ll never make it perfect, because no one can in such a subjective world. But it’s already great. You’ve done a fantastic job to get it to this point, and it deserves a spot on plenty of bookshelves across the world.
Philip, I am going to print this out and hang it on my wall. This made me cry in the best way.
Just…thank you. Thank you so much! <3
Well-Tempered Proof says
You’re very welcome. 😊
I’m sorry you’re going through this Nicole. You’re right in that you’re not alone in feeling like an imposter and that your dreams are hard to reach–I think a lot of writers wanting to make it their career have that struggle, and while I can’t speak for anyone but myself I’m going through something similar with my short fiction, and feeling stuck with it. I can’t give you much advice because I’m not through it, but I hope maybe it helps to know you’re not alone in your struggle and you have an audience that believes in you. ❤️
Ugh, I’m so sorry you’re going through similar emotions with your own writing, Elka! I definitely don’t wish this sort of thing on anyone, though I think we all feel it/experience it as creators!
I believe in you and I hope we can both finds ways to navigate and conquer it, even if it’s just allowing enough time to see the end of it! <3
“Maybe even the very fact that writing goes on the back burner before gaming or my day job makes me feel like a fake writer; like I can’t give enough or sacrifice enough to “earn” it, so I don’t deserve for my dream to be published to come true.” OKAY I did not need to be attacked like this Nicole, ahah. Seriously, I feel this post so badly. I’m too often feeling this way, like I’m an impostor and like I’m fake because, well, I need to work all day long and once I’m home from a long day, I don’t have the energy to dedicate to it all. SO I’m extra slow with anything and it’s so frustrating. I hope you can find a way to navigate this and I am always here for you. You’re doing amazing, Nicole, word by word, you’ll do it. <3
Ahhh, I hate that you connect with that quote so much though, Marie!! 😭
But, I think we both need to be kinder to ourselves in this regard (or, let’s be honest, every bloody regard), because beating ourselves up doesn’t solve anything!!