Monday, April 16, 2012

Fear, Failure, and Fear of Failure

Here's a piece I wrote for Crosscut about the lead-up to the Hugo House Literary Series last month.

It's been a really interesting few months, writing-wise, mostly because of the Literary Series. I've been writing short fiction. What a wonderful thing, after publishing my first memoir, to write about people who are not me! People who don't actually exist in the real world!

From the essay:

It’s not my job to imagine how readers will respond to my work. My job is to write as well as I can. But I am profoundly unenlightened, see, and so the thought of failing in public — at my favorite event in town, the Literary Series, no less — is not something I’m quite so sanguine about. I know I shouldn’t care. I know this. But every day when I sit down to write, I struggle to ignore the sadistic online commenter who lives in my head, the one who sneers at my subject matter, who verbally moons my devotion to narrative, who snickers and whispers that no one in the world wants to hear my story, no matter how entertaining I try to make it.