Coffee and Critiques

I’ve spent most of the last few days working over on Scribophile, giving out critiques and posting my own work for feedback. It’s actually a wonderful community there and I’ve learned to become more active and open with some of my work.

When I first joined, I was curious what it was all about. As I made my way around the site, I became more and more overwhelmed with how talented some of the works were. Even the critiques were far more in-depth than I could ever hope to accomplish. I felt a bit defeated and somewhat gave up on the site.

A month later (as in, December 31st), I was thinking of resolutions and my desire to put myself out there with some of my work. Scribophile came back up on my computer tabs and I decided to give it another look. For the next three days, I dove in and found myself piling up the ‘critiques’ of other work so I could have the opportunity to post something myself (you have to give in order to receive on this site).

So I got to the point of posting my first piece. I decided to pull from my third book, something I have a deeply personal connection to. I pulled a lot from my life and struggles, obviously with some dramatic extrapolation to flavor up the fiction, so the book is very hard for me to willingly send to my parents or people who know me well. Every piece of work has some element from your life (I mean, I’m writing it from my own head so of course it does) but this is an extremely vulnerable thing for me to do.

As I sit here and sip my coffee, going over some of the critiques, I find myself smiling. In a way, it’s because I found a community with such great support that is willing to take the time to help each other out. Then again, maybe this happiness is from the fact that I’ve broken through a personal wall of fear. The first chapter is out there, people have read it, and people have commented, critiqued, and liked it.

A weight feels like it has been lifted off my chest. I’ve done something scary and it’s still the first week of January. Who knows what else will come from 2019?

I can’t wait to find out.

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