Recently, I surprised myself with the anxiety over submitting a manuscript excerpt to my writer's workshop. It all started rather normal but then took an odd twist into what I consider abnormal behavior. I always edit and revise. All writers do that. But this time was different. I edited the heck out of it. Maybe combing over it 15 times total and revising it each time, eventually nothing was left in my opinion accept for tweaking but tweak I did. This was to a work that had already been edited several times. I hope I haven't leached the life out of that excerpt. It is from my work-in-progress, "Out of the Blue."
I am still filled with dread when I think about the upcoming evening of my critique, which takes place about a week from now. You know I've posted before about Critique Anxiety. When I read over that post from last year, I see that the anxiety I blogged about arose because I was in a different workshop, about to present my work.
I'm not this stressed out about fine art critiques. Maybe I've been toughened during all my time in art school or maybe I am more confident with that medium. I'm not sure.
Anyway, this morning I was scooting around the internet, visiting some of my favorite blogs. You are probably aware of some of them from my Liebster Award post. So I go to this post by a blogger that I respect. She is a leader in our community and she gives out very useful advice to writers; posting just about every day. I was surprised to find that she had posted the above button and had joined the Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG).
I followed up by visiting the website for the group. I wanted to see what it was all about. Knowing my critique anxiety is very real, I thought it might especially be of interest. I was at first taken aback that my fellow blogger had joined this group but I took her lead and did it too. Believe it or not, I am number 302. There are a lot of us admitting to this affliction.
Being an artist of any type is a brave act. It takes courage and a deep belief in yourself, as well as, what you have to offer your audience. When you step out and into the unknown like changing genres, style or medium of expression, it's not surprising that insecurities arise.
The group is going to last for at least another year. We post the first Wednesday of the month, as I am doing today. I look forward to learning some de-stressing techniques there. The techniques I find useful, will be shared in this space. So stay tuned. Each month on the designated day, I will delve deeper into this uncomfortable topic.