“I’m afraid my book isn’t ready to query and if I query it’s too soon, ruining my chances.”
“I’m afraid no one will like my writing or the stories I have to tell.”
“I’m afraid I’ll never land an agent no matter how many books I write or how many books on craft I read.”
Not necessarily my fears, though I do worry about these sorts of things from time to time.
What are you afraid of? Are you afraid of failing, of rejection?
Me? I’m afraid of success. I’m afraid of being so successful it’s no longer possible to have meaningful interaction with people who genuinely enjoy the books I publish. (In theory since I am neither published nor soon-to-be-published.)
I have been to four author signings in my life. Three of these were for the same author. Of these four, these three were my favorites.
These three were held in small-ish bookstores with a hundred people, maybe 150. Pretty small.
The other was in a high school auditorium. Probably the only place available for not much money that could accommodate the hundreds of people coming to this.
I got my book signed at teh three for the one author. I didn’t get my book signed at the other.
I had a nice little conversation with the author at each of the three of their signings I attended.
I never even said a word to the other author at their signing.
This huge signing, where people would have been there well into the night (on a school night and the author was a MG/YA author), like 11, to get their book signed, left me with a fear of succeeding.
I came away from this signing with the decision that I wanted to be mid-list with a devoted fanbase who allowed me to keep publishing because I always brought reliable sales.
Is this fear rational? Probably not. Does this post kill my chances of publishing? Probably not though it might make it a bit more challenging when I go on the agent hunt. But I have to be honest with myself about my goals in my career and about my fears.
What about you? What are you afraid of in this whole publishing journey?