Let’s get one thing out of the way right now. This post is not going to tell you how to eliminate your fear. Whether it’s fear of a blank page, of rejection, or of never being good enough, fear is part of the writing process just as much as it is a barrier to be overcome.
You’re a writer. But more than that, you’re human. Your fears will never fully go away, no matter how successful you become. Fear is a natural response to the unknown, and since writing is full of unknowns, it comes with the territory. You may think this advice is ironic, considering the name of my blog: Write To Be Fearless. But bear with me for a moment.
Franklin D. Roosevelt once said: “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.”
Courage – not fearlessness – is what sets true writers apart from normal people. Whether you realize it or not, at one point you were brave enough to sit down in front of that terrifying blank page, and fill it. The story inside you was more important than your fear, and you overcame it.
If I could give you a list of steps you can take to overcome your fear of failure, I would. But that would require coming up with bullshit just to make this post longer and prettier. I won’t do that.
So instead, I’m just going to be honest: there’s only one thing you can do when fear threatens to overwhelm you, whether it has to do with writing, talking about your craft, publishing, or anything else in life.
Feel the fear. Acknowledge it. And then do what you’re afraid to do anyway.