As an unpublished writer you have two choices:
Choice A – you can remain in your writers cave and go all pale and sallow from the lack of fresh air and sunlight in your life. You are happy to beaver away at your WIP, quite content with your lot and have no intention of submitting your work. Ever. You totally agree with the sign on the cave door that says ‘jog on mate, nothing to see here’.
Choice B – you can still write in your cave but you leave the room once in a while, I know it’s hard but we’re all behind you. There is the chance to meet new friends, writing friends (gasp, imagine that): on-line, writers groups, twitter, facebook…the world is your lovely shiny pearl-filled oyster. Go dive in the cool waters and see what you can bring to the surface.The sign on your door says ‘what’s for you won’t pass you’.
I was an A for such a long time but now… now I am a B.
So for all you doubters out there who think your work isn’t good enough/adverb-free enough/not Harry enough/not funny or sad enough/not genre specific enough..(phew, I’m exhausted just reading that back)! Stop it. Just stop. How do you know what your work IS if you haven’t shared your thoughts on it with anyone else? Yes, critique groups are scary, but scary good! They open your eyes to your amazing MS and help you spot the cracks that need filled. The great thing is if you like the cracks, then leave them. They are yours and yours alone.
You want it to be perfect, don’t you? Then tell everyone about it, but not the WHOLE story – just a little bit, a little teaser. Are they interested? Do they want to know more? Do you see what I mean?
Get dressed, brush your teeth and see what is on the other side of your front door. It’s a new world waiting for you but you have to want to live in it before you take the first step outside. Wrap up warm, put on your favourite hat/coat/gloves/scarf/socks and go for it. Feel the wind on your face (rain, in my case) and take a deep breath.
I choose B. How about you?