Finding Courage

A good friend of mine wrote five novels before he got the courage to submit one to a publisher.  (It was a great book, and it became a bestseller!)  A young author I met on a panel once was shaking when she sat down.  I asked if she was all right, and she said, “I’m afraid that they’ll know that I’m not really a writer.”

This fear of showing your work is common.  It’s similar to one of our most fundamental fears–that of speaking in public.  Oddly enough, surveys show that more people are afraid of speaking in public than of dying. But if you’re going to live your dream, if you’re going to become a bestseller, you need to show your work to the whole world. You’ll need to develop the guts to show your work to a critique group.

You’ll need to find the courage to send your story to an editor.  You’ll need to find the inner resolve to read the reviews of critics, and to stand against the tides of public opinion.  You’ll need to brave a book signing on a cold winter’s day when no one will show up.  You’ll need to dig deep and find the strength to quit your day job and take the risk of making storytelling your profession. It won’t be comfortable.  You might even regret it.  But I suspect that you’ll regret it more bitterly if you never try.

So begin developing courage today.  If you’re really insecure,  show your story to someone who loves you.  Maybe you could tell your colleagues at work or at school that you want to be a writer.  Tell your parents what you’ve got a manuscript hidden in your desk drawer.  If you feel safe enough, join a writing group.  If you’re beyond that stage, send a manuscript out to an editor–a really scary one.  But whatever you resolve to do, do it.


My story, Charley in the Wind, is up for free today!

Leave a Reply

Did you like this writing tip?
Click below to share with your friends

New Writing Tips
Writing a Christmas Cozy Mystery

Writing a Christmas Cozy Mystery

For at least five or six years, I’ve been wanting to write a Christmas cozy mystery. I thought it would be fun to explore my recurring characters’ Christmas traditions and how the town celebrated.

Read More »
Heart-Centered Book Marketing

Heart-Centered Book Marketing

Instead of thinking I had to contact hundreds of book bloggers to see if they’d like to review my book, I started with one blogger a week. By the end of 3 months, my book had appeared on about 20 blogs and received 10 reviews.

Read More »
best websites 2017 badge
best websites 2018 the writers life david farland mystorydoctor

✏ Get Dave's Favorite Writing Tips for 100 Days Free!

⭐How To Write Best Selling Fiction ($4.99)

Wait, before you go…

Be sure to get free access to David Farland’s course on how to brainstorm, pre-write and outline a bestselling novel!

Advanced Story Puzzle Course