This was the question that Anne Frasier asked many months ago
but it's one of the blog posts that stays with me.
I did something off-handed when I couldn't sleep in the middle of the night last night. Took no more than 10 seconds of my time. Really, I did nothing.
The response I got was like a punch in the gut. All I'd done was forward a great review of someone's book to them, but I hadn't really grasped just how hard a time they were having right now. To be honest, the way some people have been lately, I almost expected to have my head severed. The last time I pointed out something (I thought) was of note to an author, they swore at me.
It got me thinking, and that led me back to Anne's post from last July. Are we just defective? Is borderline insanity or manic depression a requirement for having an artistic personality?
And is this why people get so testy when you don't follow all the rules and behave a certain way?
In part, I also got thinking about this because of Simon's blog post here, In at the deep end, surrounded by sharks, wearing raw-meat trousers.
I think I understand Simon's dilemma. We authors work in isolation much of the time, and then when we're at functions with real, live authors some of us newbies are dying for a chance to really talk about our fears and worries...
I think we're really hoping someone will reassure us, tell us that it will be okay. And face it, nobody likes Mr. New Kid On The Block to walk in strutting their stuff, saying "look at me, aren't I wonderful?" Instead, we end up getting dirty looks and become even more insecure. "Mussed that up." "Made a lousy impression there." "That person will never speak to me again." "God, what a bumbling idiot I am." "May as well go for the capitol L tattooed on my forehead..."
I get that we have to present a certain image. I understand that confidence is important. But there's a fine line between confidence and arrogance and I'd rather be around someone still a bit insecure than with a head swelled the size of Texas.
I have no antidote for insecurity. There's someone other than Evil Kev who tries daily to cheer me up, and encourage me, and they've gotten me through some awful days. I don't know what I'd do without them.
Makes me wonder what others do when they get down.
But being politically incorrect, I can understand if nobody's going to share.