Overcoming Your Fear of Writing

Overcoming Your Fear of WritingWhy do we build so many obstacles to our creativity? Why do we let inner barriers grow and stop us from writing? We listen to our Bully Voice, we let fear win. Then we avoid writing. So often being with other writers helps us to break through the negative voice that lives inside us. Simply being with like-minded creatives helps us to believe that we are writers. We only have to write.

When away on retreat every voice, every writer’s voice, touches me. But this year one voice made me cry. In this Blog, writer Nancy Storie shares with us the story of how she broke free from her fear of writing. Here Nancy tells us how she has always dreamed of writing. How she has bought every book ever published on how to write, yet she has dreaded actually putting pen to paper. From a small farm in Texas, is a big new voice.

They have no idea how brave I believe them to be – nor how much I feel like a poser among them.  Some suspect by this point.  I see the bubble over their heads – why is she here?  Does she write or just talk about writing?

Overcoming Your Fear of Writing
Lisa Clifford and Guest Martha Ashby, Director of HarperCollins Commercial Women’s Fiction UK

Well no, I don’t talk about writing.  Hardly ever speak the word – writer.  I am not at a writing retreat, I am on vacation in Italy and just happened to be at the same agritourism where a writing retreat was taking place.  You will not find writer on my fb page. The word alone, whispered in the night, can almost send me into respiratory arrest. It is permissible today to have fears and voice them so I didn’t want the writing world to be left out.  I have adopted it as the object of my fear. 

I am an equal opportunity fearist. I fear not writing well, I fear not writing at all, I fear someone reading my writing.  I fear not being in control. I fear feeling stupid.

Overcoming Your Fear of Writing
Martyn Bedford

I have dreamed of being a writer and I have made great success out of researching How to Write.  If you want to know who’s written a book on writing, I can tell you.  In order to avoid taking any of their wisdom and actually applying it, I then read these writers novels to see if I believe they can really write.  Or if their writing career stalled and they wrote about writing to keep the publication deal alive.  And yes, I read the novels of writers who put on workshops before I sign up for the workshop. Sometimes, I have to read more than one work, just in case the first one was a fluke of success and the second or third one is a bomb.

I now have so many books from my research on how to write, and samples of the writing of those I have researched, that I had to buy a special cabinet to store them in.  The Writer’s Cabinet otherwise known as the “Vault of Knowledge Not Yet Applied.” I might mention that in addition to all the research on how to write and the samples of how to write, I also own a new pc, a new smartphone, a new tablet and a nifty wireless keyboard, all to assist in the writing that I am afraid to do.

Overcoming Your Fear of Writing
The Art of Writing September 2017 – Nurture and Replenish Your Writing Skills

FEAR, my four letter word, has paralyzed my ability to put pen to page or fingers to keyboard. It has stalked me for years, moving to each new place I went, intruding on my solitude, haunting my sleep and robbing me of peace. It followed me to Tuscany. 

“Leave me be, I’m on vacation.”

“No you’re not, you are trying to write.”

“OK, I am, but this time is different. I have found a tribe of amazing women who have struggled with you too. These courageous women have silenced your hissing voice, defied your doubt throwing insults and ignored your multitude of distractions. They write. In spite of you.”

“Ahhh, yes, but I’ll be back to visit you some day.”

“Probably, but we will be waiting. And we have found Courage, which beats fear every time.”

Overcoming Your Fear of Writing

Do you love writing? Would you like to join The Art of Writing team in Tuscany? Let’s dream, plot, write, learn and grow as writers for a week together.  Email me at lisacliffordwriter@gmail.com so that I can tell you more about our annual creative writing retreats.

5 thoughts on “Overcoming Your Fear of Writing

  • Love this and Nancy’s transformation.
    Thank you for another amazing week.

    • mm

      Lisa Clifford

      Thank YOU Christine,
      for another amazing week!
      I too loved Nancy’s transformation. It still makes me smile and will make me smile for a long time to come.
      Big hugs and looking forward to seeing you in 2018,

  • Oh, Lisa. I could barely read the blurry words, the puddle of tears in my eyes so very thick. Nancy exposed my soul, laid It out in black and white for everyone to see. Just last night I was thinking how I could back out of the retreat in June. I can’t go. I’m a fraud. Those other women really write. I, on the other hand, feel the hands around my throat choking off any ability to get my words out. I can’t thank you enough for posting this. When I see you next June, be prepared. I’ll have tears coursing down my cheeks knowing I’m about to be saved. I’ve been hanging on by my finger tips to the side of a well. My legs dangling down into the darkness. June brings the hope of being pulled up over the ledge onto stable ground.

    • mm

      Lisa Clifford

      • mm

        Lisa Clifford

        Oh Beverly,
        this is such a lovely message.
        It took me a while to answer your message but believe me it has been on my heart and mind. It really struck a chord with me, as did Nancy’s message which was so courageous I had to post it.
        I didn’t know that at least 3 of the women who joined us last week thought about backing out at the last moment. They told me only during the retreat that they felt like frauds. That is SO AWFUL!!! You are a writer, you love writing, you have something to express, you have something you want to say, you have an idea.
        Let ourselves write as a gift to ourselves.
        You will be fine, I wish you had been with us last week!!!
        I look forward to working with you next year and in the mean time take courage from Nancy. Let’s just write, let’s just enjoy being on the page!
        Always let me know how you are going,

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