What If I’m Actually a Terrible Writer?

Layne Jamesbook writingLeave a Comment

I was in the middle of putting this subject on my list of blog topics when my friend who has been beta reading our second book messaged me. “Also, I hope to finish your book soooon and maybe we can meet for coffee to discuss ??☕”


What if she has to tell me it’s all horrible, the worst thing she’s ever read?

It’s always a possibility, and I need to hear it if so.

Here’s the deal: please don’t think I’m being self-deprecating or crazy insecure. I don’t live much in a space of self-doubt. Through getting certified with Myers Briggs Assessments, I learned that my personality type, INFJs, have an “inflated sense of our own abilities.” And then my entire life made sense on a whole new level.

When I decide I can or want to do something, I start walking in that direction. I don’t wallow in insecurities or doubts; I assume I can do whatever I want to do. I’d say this blissful ignorance is both a strength and a weakness of mine.

So, rather, this moment of stepping back and asking “Do I not have what it takes? Are all my similies mush and my descriptors amateur?” is a healthy way of asking myself the hard questions.

Maybe I don’t; maybe they are. But it’s okay because I love writing.

I’m a recovering perfectionist, but a life-long pursuer of excellence.It’s hard not being amazing at something right off the bat, and this thing called writing is humbling. The growing process is painful and full of self-growth.

But actually, I do know I have what it takes. Because even if my similes and metaphors are currently poop, I’m committed and driven enough to keep learning and growing in my craft.

I love writing; it’s my happy place. So I’ll keep at it until I’ve learned to write and create and edit to the very best of my ability. I have miles to go before I sleep, but I’m ready.

We are reading The Prison Book Club in our book club, and right after my text exchange with my friend, I came across a lovely quote from Lawrence Hill who was visiting the book club.

“You have to have a lot of faith. I’m not a religious person personally, but I guess my own sort of faith– a non-religious spirituality that you have something beautiful to say, something worthwhile to say and I think every person has something worthwhile about them, something inherently dignified about them and you want to reach down and find that piece of beauty inside yourself and bring it out. And you don’t necessarily even know what’s down there. So writing is about pulling out secrets inside your own soul and spilling them onto a page. It’s kind of like mining. You don’t know what you’re going to pull up.”

Thanks, Lawrence. I needed that.

And then they lived happily after ever.

The end.

(Or, rather, the beginning?!)



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.