Wednesday, December 5, 2007

It Might Be One Giant With A Big Fat Foot

I am in one of those difficult places a writer sometimes falls in to. I have lost belief in myself. Not as a writer, so much, but as a person who is part of the vibrant "ya writer" community. I have been reading other blogs by ya authors. Some of them really stand out and are quite popular, with many, many comments from readers. I have realized that these authors have achieved a bloggy success not because they are good writers--though they are--and not because their blogs are visually pleasing--though they are--but because through their blogs they present an attractive personae and exude a friendly, personal warmth.

I do not exude warmth. Long ago, when I was a teenager, my father asked me, "Why are you so cold?" Well, there were circumstances, of course, and I could have whipped out a long list of reasons why, if anyone had been interested, but that question--that entire conversation--is long over. Anyway, I am not a warm person. Or let us say that I am warm on the inside, where I can experience my feelings in private, but cool on the outside. I have long understood this about myself--it is not a pity point but merely true.

The difficulty for me is that writing, or being a writer, is no longer a safe place for a person like me. What counts is not so much my books--though writing a good book would not hurt--but my ability to be in the world, to present myself both in person and online in a way that attracts readers and that sells both my books and my presence. I am not so good at that.

I am more like Godzilla, blundering about the ya world--if not quite destroying things at least leaving trails of cold, unpalatable seaweed in my wake. I am sorry that Godzilla got punished for going landward, that he got zapped in the end; I wish he still lurked at the bottom of the sea, a dark, bulky mess of internal conflict, maybe, but a creature happy in his obscurity, surrounded only by other wet, fishy blobs also in need of darkness. Just being himself.

No comments: