My husband, Bob, and I learned a saying a long time ago that we both like: "Faith is saying it is so, when it is not so, in order that it will be so." Believing in myself is the only way I will be able to pursue my dream of being an author. Well, I have shared with you already that I can now use that descriptor, since I have a picture book coming out this summer and a young adult fiction book that Sally and I are self publishing under the pen-name Tessa Franklin. So, though I have been a writer for many, many years, and have actually been paid a bit along the way, now I allow myself to use that "a" word. And a lovely one it is, too.
I won't allow the niggling voice of doubt that speaks up loudly to derail my plan. Like the grating sound of self doubt that recently cropped up at a writer's conference (here is a shout-out to a fabulous Society of Children's Books Writers and Illustrators gathering here in Austin last weekend!). It is a little daunting to hear from Learned Editors and Agents about the barriers to entry for children's books. It would be very easy to decide that I will never be good enough. When I compare myself with award winning authors, I get downright intimidated.
BUT I believe that there is no reason for me to write if I don't intend for others to read my work. I am sure a lot of people find writing cathartic, and the process itself is the reward. Not me. I want to throw it out there into the universe and see what happens. Do I need an award to be an author? No. Do I need to sell books to be an author? Yep.
So, picture me drowning out the paralyzing voices. That tappy-tap-tap you hear is my keyboard under attack from optimistic fingers. Nike says, Just Do It. Okay. I will.