Inside the minds of most writers the same questions must rotate on a regular basis.
– Am I a good writer?
– Am I good enough to write a book?
– Do I have what it takes to write a decent book?
– Do I have what it takes to sell books?
– Are my stories good enough to attract an agent or publisher?
– Am I capable of acquiring good reviews?
– Is my writing good enough?
Some writers decide not to waste their time answering the questions and some writers spend too much time trying to answer the questions in their head. *Raises hand*
The writers in the latter camp, rush out into the world, searching high and low for some form of external validation, to help answer the questions about their writing pinging around their head.
Are they a good writer?
It’s a tough question to answer when all your beta readers had differing views on your latest draft. The chances on everyone agreeing on whether you are a ‘good writer’ feels slim.
No one can give you a solid guarantee on whether your books will attract the attention of an agent, a publisher and then readers.
You would think that once you find the agent, the publisher and the book deal, your questions will be answered as you will have received the validation you have been searching for. I hate to be a party pooper but if you read interviews and listen to their podcasts you will hear published authors STILL questioning themselves and their craft.
The search for external validation never stops.
After years of searching for external validation, I am starting to wonder whether searching for the answers to the questions, is simply ANOTHER distraction.
We might never find the external validation we are searching for and even when we do, it still fails to answer the question.
So I am taking action and issuing a memo:
To: all writers:
Can we all ignore the questions in our heads?
Searching for external validation is pointless.
Action: Believe in your own work.