My Writing Journey #6: Fear Of Failure


After a little bit of a break I've finally gotten back into writing my novel, having drafted around 3000 words so far. Something I realized during this break was that the longer I was on it, the more I felt like putting off actually starting the first draft of the novel. I attributed that to laziness at first and wanting to spend more time frolicking in the sunlight, but now I've realized it's something a bit more sinister. It was my unnerving fear of failure that kept me cowering and putting off a big project that I was, in all other aspects, ready to begin. 

I think this fear of failure is in all of us, in one way or another, and can be quite debilitating when it crops up at the wrong time. It can leave you feeling incompetent at something that you know you can logically accomplish and then unaccomplished when you don't pursue it out of fear. After experiencing this for the past week I've realized that the best remedy for it is to just put your foot down and start doing whatever it is you're scared of failing at. Just the act of starting my first draft makes me feel less like a failure because I at least know I'm on my way to completing it rather than letting the fear overpower my desire. 

After having officially started my novel I can honestly say that I am excited to continue writing it, despite how difficult I know it is going to be at some points. I think the key is to give yourself some time between writing big chunks of it so that you don't feel burned out and to reward yourself every time you reach a word count goal. Currently I am aiming for 5000 words a week, marked by a graph that leads up to the 80,000 end goal. Every time I reach 5000 I am going to put a star on the graph as a physical reminder that I am on my way to finishing my novel. I find that this is the best motivation for me and inspires me to keep pushing forward.