I can’t believe it’s already July.
It’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, the brain child of the amazing Alex J. Cavanaugh. Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. I encourage everyone to visit at least a dozen new blogs and leave a comment. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs. The awesome co-hosts today are Charity Bradford, S.A. Larsen, AJ,Tamara Narayan, Allison Gammons, and Tanya Miranda!
Don’t forget the Insecure Writer’s Support Group t-shirt is available now!
Designed by the very talented Jeremy Hawkins, members can now show their support and commitment to the group.
Purchase your IWSG shirt at the NeatOShop.
Today, my mind is on confidence.
A couple of weeks ago I attended my first ever UtopYA conference (now UtopiaCon for 2016 and beyond) in Nashville where I met tons of amazing writers, bloggers, and readers. It was my first time being at a large-scale event as an author with my books, and let me tell you, I had a serious case of impostor syndrome to overcome.
Anyone who has met me in person knows: I am not, by any stretch, an introvert. Meeting new friends, introducing myself to others, and speaking in public are not things I usually struggle with. But that doesn’t mean I am brimming over with confidence all the time, and that was definitely true in Nashville.
From the moment I signed up to attend, and for the months ahead on the facebook group for the event, I found myself deep in doubt.
Why did I get an author table?
Nobody’s heard of my book or the series.
Why am I going to this event at all?
I don’t belong here.
Those are some toxic thoughts, and it was a real mind-game getting myself out of that negative cycle where the result would have been skipping the event altogether.
But I am so super glad I didn’t cancel. This event was probably the best event for me, as a new author, to attend. Talk about community and finding your tribe!
As far as my own fears, they were unfounded. I met people who haven’t published yet who were inspired that I had a book out. I met book bloggers who wanted to read my work. There were people in all stages of writing and blogging who were reaching out and getting connected. I met multi-published authors who were so welcoming and open, many of whom shared their own struggles with confidence and insecurity. I met some people who I hope will become lifelong friends. I met introverts who finally found the courage to open up. And the list goes on. And most of all… I realized that we’re all struggling with something.
While writing this post, I was thinking about what to call it, and “Owning Your Power” hit me. This is interesting, because in the weeks up to the event, this little phrase was literally all around me. I had piles of things with this phrase written on it.
You see… it’s one of the themes of my series, THE EXPATRIATES. It’s the phrase that’s on all of the swag I had made to bring with me to the conference.
Whenever you take on something new, the first thing you need to adjust is your mindset. Funny how I didn’t apply that to my own situation. It’s amazing what a little perspective can do to shift your mindset.
So, perhaps the Universe was trying to tell me something when I wrote this series. Maybe there was a cosmic nudge coming through in this little phrase.
Either way, I’ll take it.