Have you ever had that dream where you walk out of your house to go to work, to school, to the grocery store, wherever, and you look down just as you walk into your destination and discover that you forgot to put clothes on? Writing is a little bit like that, except that you’re naked only metaphorically, not literally. It’s what I’ve dubbed The Naked Dream Syndrome.
Writers aren’t movie stars. They don’t smile for the cameras, get featured on the cover of magazines or wear fancy clothes to award shows. As a whole, writers are pretty introverted and they prefer to share their craft from the inside of a book. They don’t want to be splashed all over the cover of Entertainment Weekly, and that’s okay. But writing does require a little bit of exposure, and if you’re afraid to write because of that fear, you have a few decisions to make.
First, you’re going to need to decide why you want to write. If it’s just something you enjoy doing in your spare time-and not as a source of income-you don’t actually need to show your work to anyone. You can go at your own pace and only share your work when you’re ready.
If, however, you are hoping to make a go at writing as a career, you’re going to have to find some way to get used to the idea of self exposure. Writing for money means that your work is going to be published and anyone who wants to buy the book or article or magazine gets to read it. In other words, you can’t be afraid to write if you want to make a decent living.
As with everything, getting over your fear of exposure is really a matter of baby steps. First, attempt to write something just for your family-an article a short story, whatever. Send your final draft to family members and request their feedback. You’ll find that compliments are rewarding and this might be enough to get you over your fear of exposure.
If not, you’ll need to take your next baby step-publication. This might seem like a much larger hurdle, but not if you approach it logically. Once of the best places to start your publishing career is right here on this website-Associated Content. You can not only start getting used to publication, but you can also get paid for the work that you submit.
One of the main fears that writers have is writing something that contains a piece of them. We’re back to the Naked Dream Syndrome; rather than showing everyone your unclothed body, your showing them you creation. If you start with a piece that has significant meaning for you-such as a short story or a novel-then you might find yourself afraid. However, if you write a simply non-fiction article, you probably won’t be as afraid to show it off.
So, to get over your fear of exposure, write an article on something simple and un-emotional, such as tips for pet owners or a review of a product. This will allow you to publish your work without forcing emotions into the picture.
Once you’ve published a few articles, you can move on to what you really want to do. Some writers are content with writing articles for magazines and Internet websites, while others want to branch off into magazines or books. Either one is fine-it’s your choice.
The Naked Dream Syndrome is likely to show up at various points throughout your writing career. For example, what if you publish a book and get a negative review in a magazine. Writers have to be thick-skinned in order to take criticism-whether constructive or otherwise-but you’ll have to take it at your own pace. Prepare yourself for negative feedback but continue to write for those who enjoy your work. Those people are really the only one’s who matter, right?