You finally get to the point of telling your story. Kudos to you. But the inner critique begins telling you how you have poor grammar, suck at spelling, can't write, got a C in English, don't read enough; did I miss anything?
Every writer has a folder file, notebook, or stack of shitty writing. Just like every artist has a closet full of crappy art. I am guilty of both. The truth is, you become a better writer by writing. I have been told a million times that I am a great writer. The other day though, I used the wrong "their" in a post. That is what editing is for. That is what failing forward is for. It is also a part of being human. Allow yourself to fail.
I was stunted by perfectionism for awhile. I always thought all things had to align to begin. The truth is, things begin to align once you begin. In my ignorance, I thought someday I would rent a lake house for three months and I would sit down and write my book. I legit thought I would have enough time, money and space in my life to do this...eventually. Writing this out makes me want to laugh. I have always had a knack for writing, so I thought I could lean in to those skills when all the things aligned. The truth is, I had no idea how to write a book. When I began, I soon found out writing is a serious commitment. One I had to show up for. One I had to become the person to even know how to show up for it.
It wasn't overnight that I created space to write in my life. First it was once a week. I even failed at that. I kept at it though. I began adding (and failing to add) time to my writing agenda. Until finally, it was as routine as brushing my teeth. Which I admit, sometimes I forget when I have a strange day. Like the times my daughter was sick or when I have a benchmark essay due for school. However, situation - normal week; writing is a part of my life. Begin small if you need to. But begin!
When I was going through cancer, I had a blog in real time. When I first got diagnosed, I wanted to share my story. I think mostly because I needed support. However as my blog gained a following, it was difficult to be in the public eye while your life is so raw and wounds are wide open.
When I was deciding on my surgery options through my blog, I had a woman who I didn't really know come up to me in public and say, "so did you keep your nipples?" I felt completely naked in front of someone who was completely clothed. It was weird. That night, I took down my blog and deleted tons of the posts. When I came back to it recently, I realized I still had some older posts. I began deleting them but then realized it might be OK to leave them up. To mark the evolution of a blog. So I left what was there, up.
With much consideration, I am going to continue my blog. However, it is going to be to help people navigate the writing world. In writing my book, every single part of the process has felt like I am completely aligned with my purpose in life. Its difficult, but the good kind of challenge. The research, the writing, the learning, the reading and then navigating how it all comes together. I just love all of it. It is such an exciting world to me.
I was helping a friend edit her website the other day. And she said, "Kate, you need to do this in your life. You are so good at it. I can feel your passion through your edits and critiques." There is nothing like a good friend to remind you of your strengths and give such authentic compliments.
The truth is, I love to teach. I love to organize information and then embed it in to story or thought. I love to share information. I love to highlight other people who are good at what they do. I love helping entrepreneurs organize their ideas and make what they are already doing, a little bit better or more clear. Most of all, I love to write. I hope that if you ever find yourself needing a place to provoke thought or get inspired when you are feeling a little lost; you consider landing here.
Kate Karpel is a writer and teacher. She is passionate about helping others fulfill their creative potential. Take a course, burry yourself in one of her books (coming soon), get some inspiration from her blog, or grab something from the boutique.