Writing a Book

Never Underestimate Your Abilities as a Writer

Last Updated on by Michael Brockbank

One of the biggest problems I’ve had as a writer is severely underestimating myself. I’d start a project, reread it and wind up throwing it away because I am too critical regarding my work. Which is why I’ve never truly completed a project. Because I believed that my skills were lacking, I denied anyone else the chance to judge it for themselves. When you underestimate you abilities, it can affect how you proceed as a writer and could play a major role in lowering your confidence level.
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Going Public

It can be a scary thing to take your writing public – especially if you have the idea of creating material as a career. Whether you’re a freelance professional like myself or looking to get your collective stories published, it can be very intimidating for many. I am one of those people who are cautious about who I let read my content. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to give it a shot and post some short stories on this site.

Freelance May Be Easier
Being a freelance writer for other people is a bit different. Your only goal is to make the single client happy. If you’re a ghostwriter, your name isn’t even attached to the work. There have been times where I didn’t like a particular piece but the client thought it was amazing. In this regard, you get paid for the post and move on. It’s a different mindset when you create something for yourself to engage an audience of a specific genre.

Pushing Through Your Misgivings
It wasn’t until recently that I decided to break out of my shell and not underestimate myself. How can I judge what you should read if I don’t let you read it? I will never know if something I create can impact someone’s life until I actually make it public. Now, I doubt I’ll come out with a popularity level like that of Stephen King from day one. However, I’ll never truly find out how successful I could be until I actually give it a shot. After all, it’s not like I get nothing from the experience. If anything, I can fulfill one of my dreams of having a book with my name on it on my shelves thanks to self-publishing.

Being Too Critical Hurts
When I look back at all of the stories I have started and thrown away, I get quite upset with myself. Who knows, I may have been a popular author by now if I would have put in the effort to build myself up as a writer. You should never dwell on thinking about what you could have become. Instead, focus on what you want to become in the future. Replace all of the “could have,” “would have,” and “should haves” with “going to.”

Don’t Underestimate Yourself

Don’t expect instant success. But don’t expect instant failure either. Create your piece and let the chips fall where they may. Until you actually put yourself out there as a writer, you’ll never know just how far you could have taken the experience. If you feel comfortable starting slow, then that’s purely your decision. Just don’t go too slow that you never have anything published. When you underestimate yourself, it’s easy to get caught up in postponing your own content. Set a goal and drive yourself to put something out there for the world to see. For example, I am using this blog to test the waters, so-to-speak. Soon, my novel will be available on Wattpad. Don’t try to force yourself to be a writer. Instead, work at your own pace and enjoy yourself. Being an author is as much for you as it is for your audience.

It’s OK to be somewhat pensive when it comes to publishing your work. Just don’t underestimate your capacity to write. When you deny others the ability to read your work and make decisions for themselves, you’re only selling yourself short. While you may not be able to make everyone happy, you may be surprised by the number of those you connect with. And that right there is why you should continue. It’s not about gaining fame or fortune, but about how you make people feel when they read your work.

Michael Brockbank
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