writing despite fear

from evy's notebook

I've been trying to write more this month. I've also been quite anxious recently, and writing has been harder because fear comes more easily to me, but I'm writing anyways. And that feels good.

What does the fear look like? I'm afraid of writing things that aren't "good", for various definitions of good. I want to practice writing in ways that are compelling and interesting to readers. I want to be clear and concise. I want to write about ideas with depth and nuance. I want to practice editing. I also want to just write, without worrying about needing to do those things.

I want to be motivated by things other than fear, and I know I can enjoy writing things that I'm proud of. But to not be motivated by fear, to practice moving towards things I want instead of away from things I don't, it feels important to be able to write things I feel mediocre about. I want to set up a baseline of creating things, with the option to add layers of care and craft on top when I feel up to it.

But what if I write about bad ideas and give other people bad ideas and lead the world to be a worse place? I don't know what future me might regret posting on the internet. I like writing about my thoughts an opinions, and so this is always a risk. I can mitigate it to some degree, but I don't want to be paralyzed by it. This is part of why I like this notebook -- nobody can subscribe to these writings, and I'm pretty sure that most of the readers of a post are the people I directly shared it with. I'm not trying to grow a readership for this space. In fact, I'd really prefer that evy.garden never have more than a dozen or so monthly visitors, and I've been wanting to move my zines and community living writings (which I try to spread more widely) to different websites. It feels important to me to be able to share things I write, and putting it on a website where someone may or may not view it is the most low-stakes version of that for me.

Why do I want to write? Why do I want to share? Why do something even when I'm afraid? I don't fully know, but I do know that writing for others is something that has brought me a lot of satisfaction since I wrote Facebook posts about my thoughts almost ten years ago. It helps me feel connected to community and to ideas that are important to me. It helps me create the kind of change I want to see in the world. And so I keep writing.

Also, huge shout out to a new friend who noticed I liked writing and asked if I wanted to do some writing accountability together for NaNoWriMo this month. So much of what I do is powered by friendship and community <3