By: Tia Love
Those brave few of us that dare to take up the pen instead of the sword have many, many struggles. From the pain that produced the art to the extreme lengths we go to when critiquing our work. The struggle is real.
What is the biggest struggle you’ve experienced as a writer?
Think about it.
For me, it’s the fear that no one will care about what I have to say.
In a world full of emerging and veteran authors, bloggers, and journalists, how are my words ever supposed to make any kind of impact? Who cares about what a 25-year-old, black girl, born and raised in the Midwest has to say? When Eminem sang, “my insecurities could eat me alive,” he was talking about me. Even as I write this, instead of critiquing it for grammar and rich content purposes, I am most concerned about how you, the reader, will perceive these words. I don’t care if you agree with my position, but will you like it. Or will you immediately hate me after you finish reading?
For this reason, I am always afraid to write. Ha. Imagine that. A writer afraid to write. Crazy concept right? Still, its a real fear. I am not sure if artists are more sensitive than the average person, I only know that I am sensitive about the art I create. Its a big part of who I am and I have always felt like a negative opinion against what I create is personal.
I have to remind myself, it isn’t personal.
My antidote to that paralyzing fear is a constant reminder that art is for the people. On my computer desktop, I have a little note attached to it that reads: “stories never belong to the author who happens to write them down.” I may have the talent to put the words together and make things sound good, but it is not up to me to decide who reads that story or whose life can be changed by it. If out of my struggle, art is born, then its worth every second, minute, hour and insecure thought I have in the process.
I still have my fear of being an insignificant writer. I still wonder if my words get tossed at the bottom of the abyss before they’re even read. As painful as that struggle is, I refuse to allow it to capitalize on my fear and stop me from doing what I love most. I write because I love to, and I hope that it shows when you read it. But if not, I’ll still be writing.
What are your struggles and how do you overcome them?