Reclaimed will be out in the world in six months, and while I am filled with excitement, there is also an overwhelming fear because I will no longer have control over it. I wonder if this is the same fear that many parents feel as they push their little ones out of the house and onto the school bus that first day of kindergarten. As they carry yet another box into their child’s dorm room. I have nurtured this book and now it will soon be out of my hands and to me, that is so totally exhilarating and at the same time so totally terrifying that I find myself wanting to jump up and down in joy while screaming in sheer terror.
I am someone who fears. As a child, I feared failure enough that I didn’t always do things that I thought would be interesting solely because there was no guarantee I would be any good at them. I missed out on a lot of fun and adventure because I chose to only do those things which I knew I could.
At a very young age I was afraid of writing. Or rather, I was afraid of others reading my writing. I was afraid they would think it was horrible. That I was. I was afraid they would think I actually thought I was good when it was so obvious I wasn’t. I was afraid of their rejection or their pity. I was stupid.
Conquering those things we once thought impossible makes us better. It teaches us humility and shows us how exhilarating, how spectacular, how truly terrifying life can be.
Maybe I am the only one who feels this way. I doubt it. I am sure that even those calm, collected authors have a tiny moment of panic when they realize they can’t revise that scene anymore, tweak that sentence. When they realize that their flaws as a writer will be on display for everyone to see, that their baby, a printed, black and white piece of their soul, will be examined and picked over. Except that is exactly what I want – for someone else to know and love my characters, for someone else to get chills during that scene or laugh out loud just like I did when writing it. Writers want their books to do for their readers what countless other books have done for them – transport them, entertain them, show truth in fiction.
Because that’s why I write. I write because I love books. So for all of you writers out there who have gotten past that fear and shared your books with the world – thanks. I am who I am because of countless authors who were brave enough to create art and then let it out into the world.