I've been querying Webs, my completed urban fantasy young adult novel, off and on for over two years. I've stopped to revise, once with an agent on an exclusive basis for nearly a year. Obviously, that didn't work out. My point is I'm not shy about sharing my stuff. I've sent it to friends and family WAY before it was any good. I've had beta readers. I've posted bits in forums for feedback.
But...now I'm putting it up on Wattpad's Gatekeeper contest (see details here and here). And I'm a little scared.
I'm scared because now people who I've been hiding from will see my writing. Friends and family who I haven't told about my writing. I love these people. I don't think they'll be mean. I just...don't want them to see me as a failure. And we all know that the writing journey, for so many of us, is long and full of bumps and sometimes it ends differently than we want. I don't want them to know about all my failures. Or, I don't want them on the journey with me.
But that isn't fair to them. I mean, none of them want me to fail. And even if a bubbly teen fairy tale isn't their cup of tea, I'm sure they'll support me. I just want to present only my best self, and I'm afraid they'll see all the rejections sort of like blemishes. Even though they won't. But what if they did? Like having someone drop by when I've got dirty diapers piled in a heap by the tv and the dishes full of dishes and my kids still in pajamas and noon (or in other words, everyday). I'm afraid for people to see the real me.
I'm getting past it. I'm being brave. I'm putting my baby out there, warts and all. Oh, and if you're curious, you can check out the opening of my story here. If you stop by, I'd love a vote...the first round is all about votes. And also: self-promotion? Another thing that makes me really nervous.