Treat everyday as a new adventure

I’m Terrified!

Do you have doubts about your writing?

I do! I don’t doubt my stories, or my characters, or even my dialogue, but my writing ability and putting it all together, publishing it, and then having others read it…Oh my gosh!

I was reading Criminal Minds A virtual Panel’s blog this morning and he talked about how a story for him is all about the characters. Check out his blog here


Now some people like the settings, some prefer dialogue, and some, like me, like the plot or story, as I like to call it.

I’m a “story” reader.  I like a good story with a beginning, a middle, and a Happily Ever after or at least closure.  I can remember basic outlines of stories I read YEARS ago.

I’m the same way with the music I listen to. If you give me a song with a five minute guitar riff or a drum solo, you’ve lost me. Tell me a story with the lyrics. You can have just about the worst instrumental with it, but if I like the lyrics, you’ve got me! But you can’t have a song with just lyrics and no music, that doesn’t work either and neither does a story without dialogue, characters, and descriptions.

I write. I try to write from my heart. I like to tell a story. Then I hit that publish button and people  tell me, “I just bought your book. I can’t wait to read it”  Now I’m paranoid. Here’s where the doubt creeps in. Did I do a good job? Are my characters lovable or despicable enough? Will the reader want to keep reading to the very end?  Could I have made it better? Will they like my story?

I’m not a perfectionist, but I believe in giving everything my best. I’m not very good at criticism, even constructive criticism leaves me paranoid. “They hate me! Why did I even think I could do that!” Yeah that’s me. And yet when someone gives me feedback or a review, I expect the good, the bad, and the ugly. If you are going to sugarcoat it and say you loved it and then tell someone else, that’s the worst story you ever read, how am I supposed to learn?

So why am I terrified?

“The Good Dr. Grant” has a review coming up from Honest Indie Book Reviews


Which in my personal opinion is one of the best reviewers. Gary’s reviews are  detailed, insightful, and constructive, and I am honored to have him reviewing my book, But I’m still terrified 🙂

Do you doubt your work after you’ve put it out for all the world to see? Or am I the only one who’s paranoid?


  1. Lol! I feel the same way when I WRITE reviews! What if the author feels hurt by the “What I thought could be improved” section? Or worse, what if I got my facts wrong and criticized unjustly? It’s always scary to put ourselves out there — and yet, we love it, or why do we keep doing it? Like going on a rollercoaster or watching scary movies, it sort of pushes our emotional envelope. I’m about a third through “Dr. Grant,” and you don’t have a thing to worry about. It’s light, sexy and fun, plus it has dogs!. Love your blog, K., keep up the good work!


    • Wow you’re quick I just posted this 🙂 Hi Gary I never thought about the other side, but I can assure you, I expect an honest review and the only way to hurt my feelings is to tell me I’m rude, it’s the only criticism I can’t seem to handle in any part of my life :-/


      • You rude? Haha! Miss Karen, you are sweeter than Tupelo honey. And whaddasensayuma, too! ( – :


      • Haha! Good morning Gary. I’m sure I have been rude a time or two, but I don’t remember! Maybe that’s why I apologize before I say or do things, “I’m sorry if this offends you, but…” Is always the first thing out of my mouth! LOL!


  2. We all have times when we think our writing sucks. Anyone who thinks their writing is awesome all the time, probably isn’t very good because they’ve stopped looking for ways to improve. (I’m even more paranoid about my ability to market my writing than I am about the quality.) I’ll check out your review when it comes out.
    Good luck!


    • Hi Diana
      My biggest hangup is with showing vs. telling. I mean I like my characters, my dialogue, and my story or I wouldn’t have wrote it, it’s just my style of writing doesn’t fit the norms of how people say you should write and I stress on that and even though I like it, doesn’t mean others will. :-/ As for marketing I’ve always been good at helping others with marketing ideas and yet terrible at speaking out about my own work.


  3. Candace Knoebel

    You are not alone!


  4. Zen

    I think everyone will always feel paranoid about their book, even if it underwent extensive editing! Despite feeling happy when someone accepts my book for reviewing, I still feel scared about what they might think, haha.


    • Hi Zen! Well believe me I’m nervous even though Gary is telling me I really don’t have anything to worry about. And I’m excited about the review even though it terrifies me. But then, I write so others will read, right?


  5. We all have doubts. Haven’t you ever read Bird by Bird?


    • No I don’t think I’ve read that. I’ll have to check it out.


    • No I don’t think I’ve read that. I’ll have to check it out. I’ve only been writing for 14 months now. I never planned of being a writer, never dreamed of being a writer, so I’m learning as I go. I know, probably not the best way to do it, but….


  6. Oops posted the first 2 sentences twice sorry


  7. Hey Karen. I think we all feel like that. I have been at this for 7 months, but there have been people who have been doing it for years that still feel like you do. I think it is healthy in that it pushes you to get better. But, make sure you celebrate the bravery in it all as well. Putting your stuff out their for the word to see (critique, love, hate), is an accomplishment in itself.


  8. The fear you have is called, “Being a Writer” If you don’t suffer doubt- then you’re either not a writer or you’ll never learn to improve. I really enjoy your putting your fears out here, because you say what is true for most writers! If you’ve written something good it will show in the reviews– even the reviews you don’t like show that people think about your work– what more can we ask.

    Writing is a lonely life and you help draw us together. Thank you Karen!


    • Hi Dannie
      Funny thing is, putting my fears out here is the easy part 🙂 Since I’m pretty new to all of this, I feel I still have a lot to learn and I do welcome reviews good and constructive. I don’t think any of us want a bad review. And you are welcome and Thank you.


  9. Casey Sheridan

    You sound exactly like me. 😀


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