OK, maybe it’s not really a secret!
I am a dork. I am also a dweeb and a little bit of a geek.
Of course, according to this Venn Diagram I found, I could possibly just be a Nerd.
In addition, I have now discovered that I am a complete and utter chicken. Yes folks, just call me Dr. Jellyfish or Lily-Livered Lisa.
How did I come to this glorious conclusion? By searching for my mojo of course.
Let me try to explain. I have been taking an on-line course, of sorts, on self-publishing, all with the goal of finally getting my book for middle-grade readers published, as I had announced. This course is being taught by a much-published author and his partner, who have created a company to publish his back list and take the lead in self-publishing. They are really impressive. The other members of this class seem to range from those just beginning (I count myself as a beginner) to long-standing writers with a whole catalog of work. While I am thrilled to be interacting with all of these talented wordsmiths, in reality I have gotten a severe case of “imposter syndrome.”
At first, I found myself fully participating, contributing answers and even asking questions. But, the deeper into the course we get the more I become an observer, hiding behind my insecurities and the safety of being somewhat incognito in a course held only on-line.
Why am I insecure? What am I afraid of? Well, I think it began as they started discussing platform and emphasizing the importance of having several good books, not just one book.
I have ONE book.
It continued with the discussion about trying to say who you are as a writer. I couldn’t do it. I have a zillion projects I want to write, and none of them seem to put me in one single category.
My terror grew as I learned that self-publishing to platforms like Kindle or Nook (both of which I had in my plan) isn’t as simple as converting a word document to the proper format. You have to start worrying about code and all sorts of other technological mumbo-jumbo. (I may be a geek, but I’m not really a computer geek. I can handle a lot of technology and make my way through lots of different programs, but once you start talking code my head wants to explode).
I found myself curled up in a ball and surrendering all hopes of ever publishing my book or ever writing another.
However, after some pep talks from wonderful blogging buddies I finally gave myself a kick in the butt and decided to do something about my complete lack of self-confidence.
So what did I do? I did what I always do in moments of doubt, something which confirms my title of NERD Queen.
I studied. I revisited notes from the course that resulted in my one book. Then I organized.
I decided that the best way to make me do something was to follow the rules again. So, lesson by lesson I am attempting to face my many projects exactly as I did them before. Today’s first step was to write out short descriptions of things I would like to write about, books I would like to do. By doing that, I discovered a few important things:
- I may not fit only one category in terms of my writing goals, but I have a few broad categories that seem to tie all my projects together.
- The fiction ideas all tend to include elements of fantasy, elements of reality, magic, and female characters who learn to claim their voices
- These ideas seem to be geared mostly at young adult audiences (although I would hope to be able to cross genres and age groups somehow)
- The non-fiction ideas all tend to also be about finding voices and creating community as well as justice.
- I have a lot of ideas, and many of them are further along than I remembered. Several of them still excite me, and as I was organizing them into a binder it got my creative juices flowing.
After organizing my notes and ideas, I started a plan. It’s still tiny. I still have a long way to go. But I started setting short term, middle term, and long term goals.
Then, I went for a walk.
What is the end result of all this planning and organizing? I’m not sure yet. But at least my hidden dorkiness has come out of the closet and is beginning to think about creating again. That’s something, isn’t it?
Now, I think I’m going to sing at the top of my lungs and see where it takes me!