Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The First Insecurities of 2015


Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.

I'm currently #80.

Can I hear a "Woot, woot!" for the new year? Maybe, just maybe this will be the year we shed our insecurities for good.

Hey, we can hope!

For the most part I'm very optimistic right now. FADE INTO ME is progressing nicely and should be out by the end of the month. I'm confident in the story, more than I was with THE MAGIC WAKES. It's easy to see that the actual writing is improving. There's more to learn, but this new novel feels like the proof I needed that I can learn and get better.

That hope should translate to the editing of Talia's second book. *fingers crossed*

My insecurities have only flirted with me so far this year, and it's because I played the comparing game. Here's the deal. I've always loved science fiction. However, its the old guys I read. Clarke, Asimov, Bova, Bradbury, Heinlein, etc. The Sci channel is currently rerunning a series called "Prophets of Science Fiction." Watching drives home to me that I'm really NOT a science fiction writer. For a moment it made me sad, and then I realized something.

I'm not a science fiction writer like the writers I love because I'm writing for a different audience and for different reasons. It's not because I'm not smart enough. With research I could really beef up the science side of my novels. However, while I love exploring the physics and engineering side of things when I read, when I sit down it doesn't feel important to the story I'm writing.

Those great men were exploring ideas. Asking questions to figure out where we come from, our purpose on earth, where we're going, etc. They felt the need to find ways to accomplish the things they wrote about. Because of that, they predicted and set into motion many technological advances.

I don't feel that drive. I write to explore characters and their emotional journey. It just happens that my settings are generally otherworldly. My purpose is escapism. And I'm good with that. :)

Do you ever make the mistake of comparing yourself to other writers? Which ones?
Coming January 31st
You can read the first 2 chapters on my website.
You can also sign up to win a free signed copy on Goodreads.

38 comments:

  1. Congrats on Fade into Me!! A fresh, novel approach for the genre, IMO.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Carol! I appreciate that. You staying warm?

      Delete
  2. The other day I read "Farewell to the Master" I wouldn't write something like that but I sure loved it, I like the old stuff too, I know what you mean, but isn't it great just to figure who you are as a writer :) good for you :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is good to figure out who we are and what we want to write. Just wish we could do it faster and then hang on to it. I'm sure I've got mood swings in my future. LOL

      Delete
  3. Well said, Charity! I'm not about the science either. I don't care how it works, only that it does. I write in the adventure style of space opera and I'm happy with that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too! I love your stories. I keep sitting down to read Dragon of the Stars and then I get an email from my editor. Sorry it's taking so long, but I'll get it read soon.

      Delete
  4. I have a horrible habit of comparing myself to writers I have NO HOPE of being similar to. But it's good to forge your own style/genre. Congrats on nearing the end of your current book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Annalisa! Other people ask, "Are you like JK Rowling?"
      Um, no.
      No one is JK but JK. And that's a good thing. I wouldn't mind being as famous or rich though. :)

      Delete
  5. You have to write the way your heart tells you to write, if the science is not relevant to the story, it would feel awkward to force it in. You're doing the right thing! best of luck!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed. Maybe one day I'll venture into something more scientific. Then again, maybe not.

      Delete
  6. I try not to compare myself to other writers. If you have a certain story in your head, then it's important to get it out. It doesn't matter that it's different from what everyone else has done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hear, hear! This is why I moved to self publishing. I write the story in my head. They just don't happen to fit nicely into standard genres which makes them very hard to label and sell to agents. Good news is I'm finally good with that too.

      Delete
  7. It's all narcissism in the end, isn't it? We'd like to think that we fit in with only the best people, or that we're a little ahead of our peers? Only on paper are "all men created equal," and I think it's more of a desire than an actual truth. That makes "comparison shopping" unavoidable in my opinion. I read something recently in the New Yorker that had to do with theft and it was this: most theft occurs in small amounts because the thief is reaching for a lifestyle that is barely out of their grasp. It's those feelings we all get of "entitlement" and "keeping up with the Joneses" that drive people to bad behavior. I think that if there is something to learn from this its that when we do compare ourselves to others, we need to dig much deeper than the surface and do a "full comparison" to make sure that what we measure isn't being disguised by falsehoods and illusions designed to trick us into thinking we are coming up short.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is SO true. Even when I know I'm not "there" yet, the narcissistic side of me still believes I will get there. It's been nice this week to dig deeper into why I write what I do and realizes it's okay to be where I am.

      I just hope it lasts. ;)

      Delete
  8. I try really hard not to compare myself to other writers (but it's impossible! I read one story and think- hey, I could do that; then another and feel like I totally stink!) true masters take my breath away, but in a good way.

    Good to hear 2015 is starting out so well. Best of luck with the new book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is impossible! The great thing is IWSG makes me slow down and really think about why I compare and ask myself if it even matters. It only matters if it helps me improve my own writing. That's always a good thing, but I can't let other's skills chip away at my own self worth. I'm growing and that's enough.

      Delete
  9. A little variety in the genre isn't such a bad thing. Wishing you a great day over here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Variety is good. Keeps things fresh and unexpected.

      Delete
  10. What a charming cover. I love it! I still compare myself to other writers and we know we shouldn't, but it always happens. I'm sure even Stephen King and J.K. Rowling do it. We need some sort of benchmark for our progress...but what we shouldn't do is feel inadequate. Because we're comparing our behind-the-scenes with their highlight reel, as I once read! People tend to show only the best parts of their lives, so you have no idea what's really going on in there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great point! And without Stephen King and Rowling how would we know what to shoot for--in our own ways? :)

      Delete
  11. Hi Charity! I love your first name, that's beautiful! I too am writing sci-fi, but really, it's about a young girl on an emotional journey. So I'm totally with you concerning what you're doing with your stories! From your IWSG friend, Rob.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! good luck with your story. I think most readers really connect with the emotional journey of our characters. It gives us hope with can survive our own and come out on top.

      Delete
  12. I make the mistake of comparing myself to others. (Not writers at the moment. I'm not really a writer anymore.) We must be the best of ourselves that we are, not a pale imitation of someone else.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *hugs* I think there's still a writer in there. But I do agree that we have to be our best selves. That's all we can really do.

      Delete
  13. I write sci-fi romance--because I love reading it. It's light on the science, more on the relationship. Like others have said, I don't care how a spaceship works as long as it does (same with my car). I wish I could write as compelling as my favorite authors. But they're different people, have different life experiences. I try to be myself and keep writing. Best wishes, Charity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is so true! It's funny how our own life experiences creep into our writing no matter what. Best wishes to you too!

      Delete
  14. The comparing game can definitely be discouraging. Here's to embracing YOU in 2015, Charity!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Emily! That's my plan and I'm sticking to it.

      Delete
  15. I've compared myself to other writers from time to time. It never does me much good. In fact, it hinders me 99% of the time. I do my best not to compare and just focus on being me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL, funny how comparing slows us down, sometimes to a complete stop.

      Delete
  16. I compare myself to everyone: friends I don't sell as well as, celebs I feel I'll never write as well as or as fast as. (Then again I have friends who write way faster than me).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I'm slower than you, so compare yourself to me. ;) Here's hoping we can both be happy with who and where we are.

      Delete
  17. I think exploring characters and stories is JUST as important. It doesn't bring about technological change but I like to think the right words can bring about cultural change, and individual change of readers! I also think if we don't understand ourselves how do we ever hope to understand the universe, you know?! <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true Mia! :)

      The universe might implode if we finally figure ourselves out though. You know?

      Delete
  18. Your Fade Into Me cover is fantastic! Love the trailer as well.
    I'm the worst about comparing myself to other writers. Even when I'm reading something I think is garbage I'll still think, well, they're still better than I am! It's a terrible habit I need to break.
    Happy 2015 to you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here's hoping we can both quit the comparison game.

      Delete
  19. I used to compare myself to other writers. Not so much anymore. I guess I'm coming into my own and beginning to understand my uniqueness as an author--as we all have to do at some point. That doesn't me I won't finish reading a book and think "Wow, I wish my prose/character development/plot skills were amazing like that." I see it more as a challenge.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I used to compare myself to other writers, especially Nora Roberts, but then I learned that it's a good thing my writer isn't like hers, or anyone else's. Mt writing, and your writing, is unique in its own right, and that's a good thing! :)

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...