The Bad Influence
Published in

The Bad Influence

225 Words

Open Mics Are One Thing; Public Readings Are Another

But why am I not nervous about it?

Photo by Seven Shooter on Unsplash

In college, I used to do Open Mics. I would be so nervous, my voice breaking, shaking, stuttering, and I don’t even have a stutter. Maybe, by the end of college, I finally found my voice, and afterward, I did Open Mics on and off. But that was a long time ago.

I recently spoke to someone at the local library about my poetry book, This Will Remain With Us. I asked if they would be interested in the press release, and she said, “How about a reading?” My past self would have bolted from that question, saying something like, “No, just use the press release, please.”

I was supposed to get a call this week regarding that possible reading, but I know it is the holiday week. I’ll reach out next week to see if it’s even going to happen, but I’m amazed at myself. I’ve been imaging myself doing the reading, sitting there in a room surrounded by people with all eyes on me, and I’m not nervous. My voice is not breaking or shaking, and there is no stutter. I can picture myself reading the poetry and having a conversation with those around me. My past self would be impressed, maybe even ask me, “What’s your secret?”

I have none. I think it’s just time that I stop hiding in the background.

Thank you for reading my writing. More publications with my writing can be found here:



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