Being a writer is not something I can do in isolation. It’s dangerous to go alone. Isolation leads to loneliness, which feeds the beast of critical self doubt. It is a path that begets broken dream and cast aside hope.
So, instead of locking myself in a remote cabin, I am practicing my dream, my voice, my words in public. I am writing for others to see. I may not be (always) writing for the sake of others, but I fully intend these words to be seen.
This means I am going to find myself connecting with various people because of my written words. That is a weird thought to me. I have always been the one that secretly wants people to read my blog, you words, so in relationships I already have, I have tried to introduce people to my writing. It always has felt awkward and smarmy. The concept that people may want to connect and interact with me feels incredulous. It is, however, a real part of practicing the declaration, “I am a writer.”
I am going to have friends, peers who write, perspective art, practice their dreams in public. Social media has also connected me to a web of bloggers, writers, dream chasers. I also have a fantastic community over at My Killer Tribes. The support, interaction, and challenges I find in these people is invaluable.
Truth is, I have writing friends… and maybe a few fans: people who like reading my words, who keep up with my projects. These are the relationships that I don’t know whT to do with. I mean, it’s weird to stop and think that someone likes your writing, resonates with your voice, and/or finds your ideas worth chewing over and commenting on. Fans; people who read my work and like it.
There is a third kind of relationship created through my writing. Jeff Goins called the patrons. These are the people who are willing to leverage their resources and reputation to give my writing exposure and publication. These relationships I am the worst at. I mean, how do I convince someone to take a risk on me? How can I get a well known bloggers to let me guest post? How can I get an editor to put my words in the magazine layout? I do it the same way I develop friends and fans: by practicing in public and writing good words.
Writing is not an isolated discipline. I write from within community even while I offer my words to community. These relationships that develop around my words, these are the public I am practicing in front of.