…would you still write?
I was faced by this question earlier today. Mostly because of how stressed I am working on my novel. Questions a lot of authors have most likely asked themselves returned to me in full force.
Who am I writing for? Will I ever find an audience? Am I really a writer? Am I just fooling myself into believing that I was made for this?
There are so many writing communities out there, with so many aspiring writers/authors at different levels of their writing “career”. Some would not dare call their writing a career.
I’m one of those who do.
And yet I am constantly plagued by doubt, and no matter how much I tell myself the things I read in Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, quotes like:
Creativity is its own reward.
I still find myself giving in to my relentless and cruel inner critic.
What makes you think you can do this?
It won’t shut up. Pfft.
Recently, what my villainous inner critic has been telling me is that I will never find an audience for my work. I remember a new acquaintance (now a friend) who once snarkily told me after I opened up my dreams of becoming a novelist: “Who would read your books?”
I told her my target audience – “Women, who are 19-35 years old, maybe?”
She just shrugged.
Finding an audience. Building a platform.
Who has time to do all this? When do we do it? Before writing our book? After? Won’t the book get us an audience? It’s almost like the entire “What came first? The chicken or the egg?” debacle.
Then it hit me. Growing up as a Christian, it’s always been emphasized to me to live my life for an Audience of One. It has been my consuming passion lately to be the kind of person He thought of when He created me. I want to live for Him.
So maybe I’m going about this the wrong way and stressing out for the wrong reasons. If this whole thing is just between me and the Master of Creativity, then I can just loosen up. Have fun. Because really… I dreamed of this. I once dreamed of a life writing and making up characters and worlds and stories.
And now I’m doing it. I am grateful.
The journey has been and will remain amazing no matter what the destination. As long as I’m with Him.
Note to Self: Just write on, Joanna.
*Disclaimer: Photo on the header is from the film, Something’s Gotta Give, and the gif shown above is from Bruce Almighty. Neither images are owned by the author.