Tuesday, August 7, 2012

To Die a Thousand Deaths or Communicate

Fear is an insidious monster for an author. What sort of fear you ask. The dreaded fear of …communication. We battle these fears as best we can but like most hideous creatures of darkness, they don't go away forever. There is always a new experience that forces us to call upon strength we aren't even sure we possess.
 Most authors aren't natural extroverts, so communication, even through emails, can be daunting. We don't want to bother editors with what our inner fear voice calls "a silly question", so we wait and hope the editor can read our minds. Alas, most can't and we end up allowing the question to eat away at us.
Then, there is the guest blogspot where you haven't heard from the owner of the blog about a definite date. Still, you send your blog but get no reply back. "Did they receive it? Did they change their mind about you?" You want to email and ask for an update, but the inner fear voice says that you're "bothering the other person", so you let time pass. Never mind the reality that the person may have missed your email, or that the email failed to reach its destination as sometimes happens in cyberspace. 
Off-topic a bit, but it reminds me of the first time I called the tow truck to remove another car from my parking space. Yes, I was scared. I was afraid of a confrontation with the unknown car owner and I was afraid of bothering the tow company, despite the company specifically servicing my gated community. Guess what. Nothing bad happened. The car was removed, there was no confrontation and I got the parking space that I pay for, back. End of story.
The old saying that a coward dies a thousand deaths' is true. The worst part is that there is really no need. Yes, it's risky to contact an editor with a question or a blog owner with an issue, but what do you have to lose. If they reply back to you in a nasty way, then you know to move on from interacting with them again. Don't get angry, just move on with life.
It's been my experience that most people reply back with courtesy; so long as this isn't the tenth time you've contacted them in the last ten day. Patience and faith in others has its place as well. Editors are busy but their business is authors, so again, what do you have to lose?
You're welcome to share your story of battling passed a fear, whether related to writing or not.

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