Tuesday, 3 December 2013

December's IWSG - Is my novel worth it??

Hello lovely authors!

Where does the time go?! It seems like only yesterday I was writing November's IWSG post...I do apologise for the delay in this December post - the only excuse I can plead is that on Saturday I returned to the UK from China, which resulted in me being awake for over 24 hours and being VERY disorientated for the rest of the weekend! But I've managed to catch up on my sleep, and now I'm good to go :).

*EDIT: Have just realised that I am, in fact, a day early in posting this - my jet-lagged-addled brain thought it was the 1st of the month when IWSG posted, not the first Wednesday of the month! That's what you get when you cross eight time zones and don't sleep for a long long time...*

Here's a quick overview of the Insecure Writers' Support Group, for those of you who are new to this blog :) - every first Wednesday of the month, writers from all over the blogosphere confess what's been troubling them in their writing over the past month. IWSG was set up by Alex J. Cavanaugh (you can check out his blog here!), and you can check out the official IWSG website here!

Insecure Writers' Support Group

I have one major fear that I'd like to share with you all this month - well, I actually have a bunch of smaller fears as well, but this the one that's causing me the most concern, so I'm choosing to write about this particular issue. My fear is quite a simple one: what if everyone hates what I write?

Now, I know that (apparently) a lot of authors go through this phrase of being convinced that no one will like their novels, but what I'm terrified of is that once I finished my novel (and I am determined to finish this one!) - what if people read it and think 'wow, that was pointless, why did this crazy author ever think that this story deserved to be told in the first place? I'd like the last three days of my life back please.'

I'm not only afraid that readers won't like my writing, I'm also afraid that they'll think that my story doesn't have a point, or that my characters are so boring/lifeless, their story didn't even deserve to be written in the first place.

The more I think about this, the more freaked out I get. Is my story worth telling? What story am I even trying to tell? What exactly is the message I am trying to get across to my readers? Do I even have a message? Why should anyone care what happens to my characters?! What should anyone even bother to read my novel?!

I don't know why this fear has gripped me so suddenly - possibly it's the aftermath of NaNoWriMo messing with my mind and telling me that there's no point in me even editing the manuscript I have so far, as my whole novel is worthless, or maybe it's just me once again over-thinking everything. I really am hoping it's the latter!

I guess the most I can do that this point is just to keep going with what I have so far. Most of the time, I'm still so excited by my novel idea and what I've managed to achieve during NaNoWriMo, and I think I just have to ignore that little voice of doubt in my head and keep ploughing forward. I just need to retain that spark of excitement that compelled me to begin this story in the first place - that overwhelming belief I had, that the world simply has to know about this story. I just need to figure out a way of transferring all that excitement and hope and determination onto the page, so that ultimately, my readers will love my novel as much as I do.

Until next time - happy writing, folks!


  1. You are right, I think many, if not all, writers, suffer with similar worries. I don't know what the answer is I'm afraid except keep the faith in yourself and your writing. Good luck and happy writing :)

  2. Thanks Suzanne :) - I think you're right - I just need to keep faith that my story is worth telling :)! Happy writing!

  3. Day early - you did good!
    Now I'm paranoid about my own story...
    If you are excited about it, and tell it with passion, then it is a story worth reading. Just remember that whenever you get paranoid.

  4. I was so relieved when I read this. Not that I joy in your pain, but because it's so nice to see my own thoughts reflected in other authors. Can't offer a lot of advice, but just another person is going through the same thing.

  5. I've stopped entering contests because I almost never seemed to get picked to be a finalist, amid all the the more commercial types of books being entered. If you're concerned that an agent won't be interested, there's always self-publication or finding a smaller publishing house.

  6. The questions that are plaguing you are completely normal. We all go through this. Ups and downs. It's just the way it goes. As artists we always need a little extra encouragement. First, write the story for yourself. Don't worry about the reader. Write your story the way you want to write it. Enjoy it. Feel it. Fill it with passion and excitement. Keep writing. Finish. That's the only way to know how good you are. Set your goal, accomplish it and then worry about readers. :) Best of luck. Keep writing.

  7. Probably not an easy, one-size-fits answer for this. All i can say is I've felt exactly as you have!

    The only thing that maybe you can do is to make sure what you want to say is communicted the best way you can through your work. If something is important to you, then make that shine. Even if your book isn't an "issue" book, you probably have a goal with your story--uplifting romance, challenging social norms with unconventional characters--SOMETHING. That goal should be clear and evident. You can't control whether people will like it. (which sucks. mind control would be awesome.)


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