So, I understand why so many are "going to write that book" or "going to start that blog" any day now. It's not just that writing is work - which it is - but there's a boatload of fear that comes with the act.
Just starting. Putting pen to paper, staring at the blank screen, pulling the napkin toward you at the coffee shop to jot down a couple of notes. Just that much can bring up all sorts of fear and trepidation. It feels like an act of power, an act of rebellion, an act of necessity, an act of foolishness, an act of creative freedom, and the worst idea in the world all at the same time.
I know about that.
I dreamed about being a writer since I was in grade school. I published my first book 30 years later. So, I know about procrastination. I know about fear.
But guess what? The world didn't crash down around my ears. I'm still alive to talk about it. My first book, and every book, is like my soul walking exposed out in the world. And it will be for you too. Probably. If you write from your heart and if you write from truth.
And that's okay. That's what real writing, deep writing, is about. Deep writing is about transformation. It transforms your readers and it transforms you while you're doing it. It exposes your soul.
And that's exactly what the world needs right now. Writing from your deepest places, from your soul. Even if you write comedy, children's books, TV sitcoms - all of that when it comes directly from your soul creates the belly laughs, the engagement, the nodding of the head, the shared understanding.
And maybe even a shared vision for something different in the world.
So, take a deep breath and dive in. You're not alone.
I'd like to hear about your process.
Sarah Anne Shockley believes that writing can be a deeply transformative process for both author and reader. She has published books on travel and living with chronic pain. Her latest book, The Pain Companion, will be released by New World Library June 2018. She is currently working on a YA magical realism novel set in Guatemala.