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Creativity coach, writing and creative process instructor, speaker, author of Around the Writer's Block: Using Brain Science to Write the Way You Want (Penguin/Tarcher 2012) and Dancing in the Dragon's Den (Red Wheel Weiser), Teaching Artist at the Loft Literary Center.

Ready to Scare Yourself Silly?

Part of the reason Halloween is so fun is because we play around with scaring ourselves. The other part, obviously, is the free chocolate to boost your creativity.

I can’t give you chocolate, but instead here’s a playfully scary question: What am I afraid of as a writer? Why? What else am I afraid of?

There are plenty of fears for us to choose from: rejection, criticism, negative judgment of our own character based on our characters (“how could you write that!”), not being able to meet a deadline, disappointing or offending people, being seen as “full of yourself” or “pompous”, being seen as foolish, stupid, naive, and not being seen at all.

One of my big fears is being wrong and not noticing the mistake until it’s published. For example, there is a place in Around the Writer’s Block where I wrote “gamma rays” instead of “gamma waves” and I, my editor and copyeditor all missed it. I was mortified when a reader very kindly pointed it out to me.

But strangely enough, the world hasn’t stopped turning and people are not pointing fingers at me and yelling “Adulterator!” or “Bad writer!”

As much as I fear (apparently without cause) being publicly humiliated, and as much as I hate to admit it because it’s so egotistical, I must confess that another fear of mine is not being noticed at all or being dismissed as insignificant.

Here’s a kicker question: What have these fears cost me and my community? What dreams have I delayed? What opportunities have I lost because of my fear? What stories went untold, what problems are still not solved, what images, insights and inspirations have I left unshared? How long will I wait?

I urge you to freewrite about this or talk your way through this question with a trusted friend. It’s a surprisingly powerful and empowering question.

Here’s the scariest question of all (cue the spooky music): What if my writing could be great, but I never risk finding that out?

There’s no question that we have plenty to fear or that fear holds us back. Fear is the very heart of resistance. We don’t get to choose to not be afraid, but we do get to choose how to respond to fear.

Don’t where to start? Scary as it may be to actually sign up for my Discover Your Way Around the Writer’s Block class, I promise you the class will give you the support, information and encouragement you need to find your way around resistance. I also promise you that you have all the courage and commitment you need to make the class and your writing work for you. 

Check out ConnectWithInspiration.com for more fabulous picture quotes.

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2 Comments on “Ready to Scare Yourself Silly?”

  1. ellen October 21, 2012 at 3:30 pm #

    great points Rosanne. Now to sign up!


    • rosannebane October 22, 2012 at 9:35 am #

      Thanks Ellen! It would be/will be wonderful to work with you in a DYWAWB class.


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