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Insecure Writer's Group---Fear of The Unknown

This is a post for Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Group

Hello Everyone, 
I hope life is treating you well.  It seems hard to believe that we are already into February.  Where the heck did the time go?  I hoped to complete four chapters of my novel last month.  Instead, I only got through two.  At this pace I'll never get to the end.  

When I complained about this to my husband, he accused me of holding back because I was scared of the unknown. Although I denied it, gave lots of reasons I had not completed my monthly goal, somewhere deep inside I knew he spoke the truth.       

When I first began the novelist's journey, my head was in the clouds.  I effortlessly wrote and published a couple of short stories and my thesis was also in print.  Then I came up with the idea for my book, and at the time, thought it was so good that an agent would beg to see it.  I imagined myself as the next Stephen King (what a putz I was back then).  

About 170 pages into the first draft, I approached an agent with my idea.  I barely got the first sentence out of my mouth, when she cut me off, said she wasn't interested.  She had just published a futuristic novel on the Mayans (which is nothing like mine) and couldn't get into it, even dropped the author as a client.  

Disappointed by the agent's response, I slinked away with my tail tucked between my legs.  This was a defining moment for me as a writer.  For the first time, I had to face the reality that publishing is a tough business to break into.  Also, I was forced to ask myself why I had chosen to become a novelist in the first place.  Since, at the time, I thought a quest for  fame and fortune was the driving force behind my writing, I decided that this would never happen and abandoned the project. 

 A couple months later, I found I missed writing, was out of sorts without it. It was a blissful escape from reality, my therapy so to speak. With this in mind, I decided that whether or not I became a published author, I would always write.  I loved/ still love it. 

I returned to my project and after the first draft was finished, posted it to an online critique site. Needless to say,  I soon discovered that I had a lot to learn about writing a novel.  My characters were one dimensional, my plot had more holes than a warehouse filled with Swiss cheese and there were enough POV shifts to give a reader whiplash.  I didn't let this get me down though.  I bought and read several "How to books," enrolled in workshops and practiced, practiced, practiced.  It took me another year to finish the second draft.  Fortunately, when I posted it again, the reviews were very positive.  With renewed vigor, I began the third and present draft. 

Last October an agent expressed interest in my book, asked for a partial.  I have yet to send it.   As I've identified above, the road to writing a novel has been an arduous one.  All my failures have driven me to improve, to be better than I was. Essentially, to some extent, failure has been my friend.  I'm proud of how far I've come.  For the first time in years I really feel good about my work.   I'm insecure that sending it off to a pro might take that away.

Yes, I know all authors experience rejection, and there is also the infinitesimal chance that an agent would like what she read.  However, I'm just not willing to venture into the unknown yet.  Not saying I'll never be, just not right now. Have any of you had similar experiences and feelings?  If so, I'd be interested to know about them and learn how you overcame them.  Until next time, happy writing, my friends. 


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It's time for another installment of the ISWG, hosted byAlex J. Cavanaugh. To learn more about this wonderful group, click on the preceding link.


I've posted my novel PAWN OF THE GODS on Kindle Scout, a publishing program ran by Amazon. It allows unpublished authors to post their work for thirty days. During that time, readers log on, read the excerpt (or not) and if they like what they see, they nominate the author for publication. At the end of the campaign, the nominations are tallied and the board votes on which books to publish. 

PAWN OF THE GODS has been up for a little over a week.  It was on the Hot and Trending list for nineteen hours, and more than one thousand seven-hundred visitors have viewed my excerpt.  All good stuff right? If that's true, why the hell am I so insecure? I suppose it's because I'm putting myself out there. It's tough to do, especially with such stiff competition. 

This said, if any of you are interested, I posted my link below.  If …

Andrea Franco-Cook's New Release PAWN OF THE GODS

Hello all,
I just wanted to announce the launch of my debut novel PAWN OF THE GODS. It's published for free on Amazon Kindle until May 22.  After that, it will go on sale for $3.99. PAWN OF THE GODS




Book Summary
According to Mayan prophecy the gods of the underworld will declare war on man. Their undoing however, lies hidden deep in the Yucatan in 1572, when a winged entrusted a celestial weapon to a Spanish Conquistador for safe keeping.
Five hundred years later, the winged god reveals himself to Soledad Mendoza, detailing how she is tied to the conquistador, and the impending war. But the young English professor is unsure of herself. Out of shape and a lonely widow at thirty, her predilection for scotch makes her more suited to join a twelve-step program, than become a hero.
Unfortunately, Soledad is forced into action when she learns her family friend, Senator Earl Edmondson has ties to the conquistador and the weapon, ties that could either harm or help her.
A pawn caught in a dan…