I wish this was a happy, giddy, ridiculously funny blog post. You know, the kind that you share to your friends and snicker over the subtle innuendoes or nod in approval at the brave message woven into the text. But it's not.
My name is Alivia, and I'm a terrified writer.
There comes a time in your life when things get... hard. I use the term hard lightly, because I know there are plenty of others in this world that have it really hard. When I say hard, what I mean to say is that something has changed, something large enough that made me scramble into the nearest dark corner and hide. I'm sure you've all noticed the lack of posts, both on here, Facebook, Twitter, some of the Goodreads groups I circle.
I'm getting sweaty and shaky just trying to type this mess out in a way to make you all understand what I'm trying to say, probably without actually saying it. Never in my life have I been good with confrontations, be it to other people, or myself in a private room. So the thought of owning up to this has me wanting to sprint to the bathroom and lean over the tub in case I heave dinner back up.
Guys, I'm terrified. If fear was ever a tangible thing like, it's definitely here with me. It's a black pit you can't claw out of no matter how deep you sink your fingers into the sides. It's a choker someone strapped too tight, and you can't so much as gasp out for help as you grasp at the air before you. It's as if someone took my heart and decided it would make a lovely tennis ball, and right now they're playing with it on the local courts, beating it back and forth, laughing.
When I first started writing, I used to think those blog posts from authors talking about pressure and fear of failure were silly things. Why would someone who crafted such beautiful prose worry about not being good enough? They had legions of fans clamoring at their doors, enraptured by the very words they feared weren't good enough. Yet, the author panics, and anxiety and fear creeps from the shadows to strike. It all sinks downhill from there.
But right now, that's exactly where I am. The idea that people are reading what I've written, are waiting for stories I'm still writing or waiting to publish, it leaves my stomach in knots like no other. Some days, I honestly would rather run to the dentist and have them do work than think about the idea that someone in the world is reading the words I poured onto pages, crafting tales of characters that feel as real to me as my own family.
Every morning I wake up, the first thought that hits me is, "Do I write? Do I bring myself one step closer to letting another read these characters?" My gut rebels, and I feel sick. My heart beats a million miles a minute until the head rush kicks in, and I go weak all over.
So for a while there, I stepped back. Stopped visiting my Facebook, stopped popping on Twitter to chat, vanished from my inbox because one more email would send me over the edge. I numbed out with music and sleep, cover design and food, an ungodly amount of coffee and some really bad fights with friends. But it never stopped the flow of words in my head, the images of characters waiting patiently for me to find my footing in this chaotic mess in my head. They waited until I gave the green light today, and like oxygen to a flame, they roared to life in an overwhelming rush. Essallie and Kayden are fighting in battles, Emily and Ben are scrambling for safety, and Lilix and Kyle are finding themselves all over again in the first brush of love.
I think that's the best thing about this job- some people write for the idea of publication, big contracts, and movie deals. Me? I write because I need to create. It's a passion, a core piece of me so deeply rooted in that if I wasn't writing, I'd go freaking insane. No matter how many times I walk away, or 'take a break' from the madness that comes from writing, it always waits for me to return. Because writing is the darkness to my light, the insanity to my sane. It's like vanilla ice cream to chocolate-peanut butter candy pieces; separate they taste good, but together they make a heavenly treat.
So to recap, yes. I admit it, I'm an overwhelmed, terrified, somewhat unhinged storyteller. But I'm here, and no matter how hard some days are, I'm never going to quit. I'm here to stay, and one day I'll get to all the emails lingering in my box, and the items I need to mail out or gift online. If you're patient with me, I'd appreciate it endlessly, as would Kayden and Essallie, or Emily and Ben.