Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Insecure Writers: Exposed!

Many professionals suffer this fear - that one day, someone will walk in, point an accusing finger and state out loud what everyone everywhere has been secretly thinking: "You are a fraud!"

I like to take the positive approach that maybe the fear arises out of the desire to be better at what we do. It's not as if others don't struggle with the same insecurity; at some point, I think most people harbor this type of self-doubt.

The cure? For me, it's to work harder. And always strive for the next level.

I think I read somewhere that it takes at least ten thousand hours to become an expert at whatever you do. That's a very long time, and speaks to the old adage that perseverance is every bit as important as talent. It's some consolation to believe that my best writing is still ahead of me, and I can't get there unless I just keep writing, writing and writing some more.

It seems my every Insecure Writers post always ends with: never never never give up! But it's true.

Hang in there, everyone. And visit the Ninja Captain Alex for links to the others in this great group. Thanks, Alex, for launching the Insecure Writers.

9 comments:

Clay said...

It reminds me of the dreams I had where was I naked in public, symbolic of my fear of being exposed.

This is an awesome post for IWSG - it's straight to the point about our fears.

My wife is reading Gladwell and she told me the same thing about 10000 hours = expert. It's a very useful thing to keep in mind when writing 'appears' to be going no where. Thanks for sharing this. Cheers!

LD Masterson said...

Yup. Number one insecurity for most of us.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Didn't it take Einstein 10,000 tries to invent the lightbulb?

Cherie Colyer said...

I like the way you think :)

Ink in the Book said...

That's an awesome adage t live by: take the positive side and always strive to do better. To accomplish this, you must keep trying. Never give up. Never!
Nice to meet you through the ISWG!

Yolanda Renee said...

10,000 hours -- gee, I was under the impression if you wrote about it that you were the expert. At least in regards to non-fiction, the interviewer always seems to question that way. I don't think I'll ever be an expert on anything, but all I ever really wanted was to write a good story and have folks enjoy it. I write murder, and I'm not interested in learning that ability to the ultimate. :)

Sorry, just having some fun, I know you were talking about the craft, I do want to get better and better, and I think I've definitely improved -- I still have my original first manuscript and it is awful -- but not anymore!

Thanks Cate, for introducing me to IWSG, this is great fun.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I don't know many writers who work harder than you, Cate. I always tell my students how important perseverance is to success.

DMS said...

I loved this post! So positive. I think I heard about the 10,000 hours thing- maybe in Outliers? It seems to make sense and I guess we are all working and getting better all the time. :)
~Jess

Cate Masters said...

I am ridiculously behind schedule this week, sorry! I appreciate all your comments. Working my way toward your blog even now...