Why the Internet Terrifies Me

I finally caved.  I now have a Twitter account.

I created the Twitter account, along with this blog for that matter, to try to build a platform of followers for my writing.  This is going to sound cliché and there are many others out there with a similar story, but I’ve always wanted to be a writer.  Even when I was going through my phases where it seemed like I would change my mind each week as to what I wanted to be when I “grew up,” there was a part of me that knew deep down I wanted to be a writer.  I was always thinking of different worlds and creatures, building to my imagination.  I wrote my first full-length manuscript the end of my first year in college and decided to try to query agents.  Everyone who had read my query letter said how my story sounded intriguing and that an agent would definitely be interested.

Except when it came time to query agents, every single one of them said no.

I was crushed, but I still kept writing.  I wrote a sequel to the first manuscript then went Round Two with querying agents about the first manuscript.

They still said no.

Frustrated but determined, I wrote another manuscript, what would become the rough draft of Halfling.  Even in its rough state, I thought the premise was enough to have agents interested.

A fog-horn blasting NO!

At that point I was tired of trying so hard all to get what seemed like nowhere.  At that point I had also graduated from college and my lofty, far-fetched vision of starting to be an established writer by the time I had graduated from college came crashing down hard.  With student loan payments approaching, I needed money.  Since the writing avenue didn’t seem to be panning out, I needed an alternate.

I decided to put the writing and querying on hold to focus on getting a job.  Six months after I graduated, I finally managed to get one.  It wasn’t glamorous, or even the most high-paying one, but it was a job!  When people asked what was new with me, I could say I got a job!

I started working and was happy to be earning.  But during those lulls in the day, characters would pop into my head and story lines would start to form.  Ideas, although very rough outlines, began to take shape.  I would write them all down, but they stayed stored on the To-Be-Developed shelf.

I didn’t know what was going on.  And that’s when I had a visit from my inner five-year-old.

My inner five-year-old was the one who first knew writing was what I wanted to do.  She never gave up on the dream, and years later she still hadn’t.  The conversation went something like this:

Me: “What’s up?”

Five (playing with blocks): “Why did you give up?”

Me (rolling my eyes): “I didn’t give up, kid.  This dream stuff is a lot harder than those Disney movies make it out to be.”

Five (stubbornly shaking her head): “No, it’s not.  You’re just not trying hard enough.”

Me (realizing this is a losing fight on my side): “Yes, I am!  I queried agents, they said no!”

Five (giving me a dirty look): “Try.  Again.”

So that’s what I’m doing.  I’m trying again.  The difference between this time and last time is what’s been happening in the past couple of years in terms of publishing and the Internet.  I realized to have the publishing career (and not a hobby I like to do on the side) I always wanted, I needed to start to take advantage of the tools out there on the Internet to build a platform for my writing.

As the title of this very lengthy post states, the Internet terrifies me.  Because as soon as I start having a Twitter, a blog, any other social media outlet, I put myself out there.

The Internet to me like a dark, murky lake to someone who is afraid of water and being prompted to jump in.  I’m scared of what might happen, of who might see this blog, of what they’ll think.  I freaked out last night because not even two hours after I created my Twitter account, two of my “followers” were people I ended up blocking because, *cough, cough*, they didn’t appear to be the most reputable of sorts.  But they had followed me which in my mind translated to they had seen this blog and oh-my-gosh what was going to happen?  I didn’t just freak out; I was having a mental apocalypse.

This blog means a lot to me because as scared as I am, I know it’s a step in the right direction in terms of reaching my goal of having a publishing career.  So please be respectful if you choose to view this blog and my Twitter.  I don’t like having mental apocalypses.

Thank you.

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