writing past the fear


As I’m writing my book on creativity and turning to some of my favorite sources for inspiration, I came across Ralph Keyes’s quote from Barbara Abercombie’s book A Year of Writing Dangerously.

“Finding the courage to write does not involve erasing or ‘conquering’ one’s fears. Working writers aren’t those who have eliminated their anxiety. They are the ones who keep scribbling while their hearts race and their stomach churns.”

I just love this. I love this because a highly successful writer is saying that he, too, like other writers, feels the fear.

I love this because as I’m writing this book, I am terrified. I am terrified that it’s not good enough. I am terrified that I am not good enough.

But I keep writing. I keep writing, with a racing heart and a churning stomach. I write despite the fear, which thankfully, helps it dissipate. Which helps to soften the rough edges of worry and what-ifs.

However, when the terror inevitably returns, I’ll return to this quote, and remember that I’m in good company.

P.S. I just came across this quote from Georgia O’Keeffe on a beautiful new-to-me blog. It couldn’t be any more perfect:

“I’ve been absolutely terrified every moment of my life – and I’ve never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do.”

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One comment

  • Amy Maricle 08.08.2016   Reply →

    I love both of these quotes and couldn’t agree more. It’s about befriending the anxiety, listening to it, and moving through. Thanks for this.



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