You Can Be Private or Popular
But I haven’t found a way to be both.
For years I have done crazy, backward things like hiding my writing away behind fake names or scrapping entire websites when I get feedback that makes me nervous.
You know, like comments from people I know.
For some reason, I’ve always been afraid to share my writing with people I know “in real life” because I’ve been afraid they will judge me for what I have to say.
Thankfully, I now have friends in my life like Iva Ursano who are kind enough to beat it into my head that I need to stop worrying about that and WRITE ANYWAY.
Not just write anyway, but share my writing with people outside of my Medium network.
It takes guts for some people to share.
I mean, it takes real bravery for me to put myself and my stuff out there after so many years of staying hidden behind virtual walls.
I am the most timid, non-confrontational person you will probably ever meet, and the thought of dealing with internet trolls or just nasty people and their comments online has kept me tight inside my bud, unwilling to blossom.
But I have so much writing to share.
I have these Medium posts, I have books that I want to edit and publish, I have poetry I want to pour into my blog (which I’ve just started over again, ha!)
And now, thanks to Iva’s encouragement, I’ve created a new Facebook page where I plan to share just about everything I write in the hopes of gaining a wider audience of readers.
This scares me.
But I’m doing the scary thing anyway because I realized you can’t be popular if you choose to be private.
You can’t grow if aren’t willing to put yourself out there to reach new readers.
What is there to be scared of anyway?
I’ll ignore them.
Straight up bullies?
I’ll block them.
I have to believe that most people out there who choose to read my words and hear what I have to say will be respectful and kind, because that is the kind of world I want to live in, and it’s the kind of world we deserve to live in.
There is so much unnecessary horror in the world today, I can’t let myself believe more horror will come from sharing my feelings on the internet, or else I wouldn’t write at all.
I’ve come too far here now to back away from the spotlight that sometimes shines my way.
I need to be brave and step into it, eyes and arms wide open for whatever there is to come.
It could actually be great.
Who knows, maybe sharing my work with the world will be the best choice I can make for myself.
It can lead me to new connections, new friends, other writers and authors, and opportunities I can’t even imagine.
That’s what sharing is — an opportunity to give and take.
To give my writing to the world and hopefully get something great in return, even if that great thing is just a quick ‘like’ or comment from a kind stranger.
I’ve always appreciated those things, the little validations that I have something going here that make it worth it to keep on keeping on even when I feel like I’m running out steam and stories to tell.
There’s always a story to tell.
They may as well be shared.