Setting up this blog two weeks ago was one of the scariest things I have ever done. I had moments of blind “what if no-one reads it?” panic but then an even worse thought occurred “what if someone does read it?” and either doesn’t like what they read, or, and possibly more anxiety inducing, what if they do like it and want to read more? The fear of “would I be able to write anything remotely enjoyable?”, and, if I did, “would I be able to recreate it?”, has put me off putting pen to paper so many times.
I have tried to make a commitment to write short stories various times over the past year but it just hasn’t happened. I would say life has got it the way but that would be a cop-out. It is me that is standing in the way, jumping up and down, waving my arms and shouting “you can’t do this”. “Better to not try than to fail” my subconscious has been whispering.
It was with much trepidation I set up a blog, thinking that maybe, just maybe, I would write something on it if it was there. I didn’t have any aspirations rather than a fleeting, this seems like a good idea at the time. No plan of what or when to post, best not to have any pressure I thought.
Writing my first couple of posts and nervously pressing the publish button with shaking fingers was terrifying and liberating all at the same time. I had spent the past few months reading blogs and you guys sure are a talented bunch. I felt out of my depth but prepared to give it a go.
When I started getting notification emails that bloggers had taken the time to both read my posts and to press the like button I was a tinsy bit excited. My ‘could I do this?”, “should I do this?” had transformed into “I am doing this”.
Then some comments came through. I prepared for the worst, took a deep breath and opened up my email. The first comment itself was positive but the last sentence “are you sure you want to do this”? totally threw me.
Do what? Write? Put myself out there for critiquing? Start to believe I can? Were they telling me, in a roundabout kind way that I was wasting my time? It was the worst thing they had ever read? I should try a new hobby?
Should I contact the blogger, ask them what they meant? Would that be rude? Did I really want to know the answer?
Momentarily deflated I sat and contemplated the question. I have always wanted to be a writer but, for many reasons, have never really given myself a chance to try. Do I really want to do this? I thought about why I had started a blog and what I wanted to achieve from it and realised I had no idea.
I concluded I wanted to follow my heart and write regularly but needed something to motivate me, some structure. I trawled through numerous blogs and posts until I found two challenges I thought I would enjoy and signed up for them. I then googled local writing groups and emailed one asking if I could join. Brave (for me) but spurred on by the question I felt it was now or never.
Confident I was now on the right road for the right reasons I decided to reply to the blogger. Opening up my emails I thought I would read the other comments first. Funny at the bottom of them all was the very same sentence “are you sure you want to do this?”
OK so I may have been a little slow realising that it was actually WordPress asking me if I was sure I wanted to approve the comment but I am grateful for the confusion. Yes, I am finally sure I want to do this. Thanks WordPress for the clarity.