I’m trying to work on the whole ‘social media self-promotion’ thing. I’m very bad at this. This is part hand pain – anything that takes me away from creative writing annoys me – and mostly because I’m a terrified, insecure, anxiety-ridden person afraid of what people think about me, which I just have to get the fuck over if I ever want to do something scary like, oh, submit my novel to an agent.
I like having a quiet blog because it means I don’t have to worry about confronting my fear of negative evaluation, to quote Sian Prior (Rotunda guest, amazing person, wonderful speaker). I can just create awesome-to-me content and not worry about the rest, secure in the knowledge that the people who come here are, well, like me. Unfortunately, it also means I don’t have to come to terms with the disjunct between the creative I am that’s a hundred percent behind my own somewhat offbeat bent because the things I write need saying … and the real-to-me belief that saying these things is going to result in everyone in the world hating me, so I should only do the internet equivalent of quiet whispering in the far corner of the library.
This is what happens when you were once a person who couldn’t say anything without receiving negative evaluation (‘nobody cares’ is certainly that); it is the ultimate upshot of life in the world of monsters.
Three years out, and this anxiety still silences me. I know I’ve done well. I’m the only one in my Advanced Non Fic class with a self-promotional-type blog. I am, ye gods, self-publishing my own books. I write all this not to diminish what I have achieved: that would be the antithesis of everything therapy has taught me. I’ve managed to put myself out there in ways that’d make the K A of three years ago pass out from shock and fear, and I fucking deserve a pat on the back for that. I deserve a fucking medal I’ll never get.
The reality of the world is, though, that I need to keep pushing those limits.
If I want to get picked up by an agent or a publisher, writing the kinds of things I do, I need to be a little bit more than just interesting. I need to be able to say that I have readers and hits and all those obscure, arcane things that make sense to people who actually try and make a slim profit from the publishing industry. I need to show that I’m worth the investment of money. Alas, really awesome personal essays whispered into a quiet corner of the internet don’t quite get me there, which is why I spent Monday in my Advanced Non Fic class learning about how to write listicals. Yes, as of this month, that is a word, and I plan to write one about self-publishing, being as it happens to be something I know a little about.
More importantly, though, I need to take my awesome personal essays and start talking about them. I can work my way up to shouting.
Step one on K A’s grand master plan of Working My Way Up To The Scariness That Is Facebook is Bloglovin.
And I couldn’t just write something random to go with the HTML; that’s not my style and you all fucking know that. So you get the shortest confessional post I’ll ever write.