Sunday, June 10, 2007

Life As An AYU Writer -- Part Deux

Or: Which scares me more, FAILURE or SUCCESS?

I’m on the verge of “finishing” my third romantic suspense novel. I think, and my critique partners agree, that it is my best work yet. I’ve recently had some interest from a couple of what I consider Big Name agents and from one editor.

This is all Great News, right?

Then why have I been so paralyzed with fear in the past three weeks to the point that I can’t write ANYTHING (except blog posts, of course)?!?!?

On the surface, this seems to be a simple case of “Fear of Failure.” If I never finish the manuscript, then I can’t submit it and therefore it can’t be rejected. Simple. Straightforward. But I don’t quite believe it.

After all these years of submitting and receiving rejections, I KNOW all about failure.

This is familiar territory.

I know what rejections are, and recognize the good, the bad and the indifferent. I know how to act and how I’m going to react because I’ve been through this scenario many, many times. And while I do dread the inevitable rejections, I am used to them. I know how to shrug them off and go on. Why would it be any different with this manuscript?

Because this just might be THE ONE?!?!

I’ve had limited amounts of success with my writing, including finaling in a couple of prestigious contests and signing with an agent (who no longer represents me). But as the saying goes, “Close, but no cigar.” I don’t really know how to “do” success, even though it is the thing I’m pursuing so ardently.

Success is the unknown territory and therefore scary.

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