I always send a questionnaire before a book concept consultation so that the author and I can both prepare for the session. As I look through the questionnaire, I make a list of any seeming or potential gaps in the author’s knowledge of book writing and publishing, so they can fine tune their book concept.
Often some of the writer’s questions have to do with fear of writing a book, self-doubt, performance anxiety and related issues. I make note to discuss any areas that need a breakthrough.
I also list areas we can brainstorm about together, feedback and ideas I want to share, and questions to ask their muse (or creative source or inner knowing). After the education in book writing and publishing, feedback on their book concept and some brainstorming, we answer the remaining questions through a guided visualization exercise “Meet Your Muse.” This often includes addresses fear, self-doubt, etc.
A Common Fear Around Book Writing
During last Friday’s consultation, the author shared her concerns about writing her book. Was it a good idea? Would people like it?
As I guided the author In the “Meet Your Muse” exercise, she shared her muse’s advice:
“As with anything, writing a book is neither good nor bad. It’s the energy with which you approach it. Try to maintain an energy of consciousness and helping others vs. fear of what people think or ego. It’s neutral to write a book. It’s the energy you bring to it…”
She paused and reflected, “I think that’s gonna be a core thing I have to return to over and over to have a good relationship with book writing.”
A Valuable Lesson for Aspiring Authors and Writers
This muse’s advice offers such a valuable lesson. While it’s important to create a quality book and to think deeply about what you are creating, when you get caught up in fear or performance anxiety, it’s a sign you’re on the wrong track.
Open your heart to your future readers.
When you can return your mind to focus on being of service, you’ll find that answers bubble up with ease, writing flows and confidence flows, too.
Do You Need Support on Your Writing Project?
Maybe it’s time you scheduled a book concept consultation with me in order to get clear on readership, tone, content, features, structure, publishing path and more.
Or, if you need help making the time, being accountable, writing efficiently and tapping into your best and most inspiring writing, check out my Get Your Writing Done Program.
A Get Your Writing Done participant just told me that in just two hours a week during our class (and no extra time for writing) she completed 150 pages in the past 3 months! And I read her first chapter yesterday and the writing is fantastic (we truly get into the zone in class, where your best writing emerges!).
She told me, “There’s no way I would have gotten that far without Get Your Writing Done!” Check out the live, remote weekly (or twice weekly) writing program here.
What challenges—or insights—are coming up for you this week? Share your comments below.
Thank you for this article. I very much want to write a book, but I have terrible performance anxiety, paralysis analysis and fear of rejection. Focusing on my audience, future readers, and the gift I want to bring to the world is key and helps to move me away from fear. I plan to write about emotional and physical wellness specifically for professional women. I don’t know if the world will receive it, but I can definitely see the need
Lisa Tener says
See if you can take some of the pressure off yourself. Perhaps start by writing a short book – a journal or workbook makes the book experiential and is also shorter and easier to write. That may help. Sometimes there is something behind the anxiety. Perhaps journaling about that can also help. Do you have a copy of The Joy of Writing Journal? That could be helpful. You can purchase it here or on Amazon.
Thank you, Lisa! I just bought the journal – it will be here on Saturday. Thanks much! Sonja
Lisa Tener says
Enjoy it! And welcome to the facebook group as well.