Lost Confidence. Need Help!

I started this blog to communicate with fellow ACoAs and it has turned into more of a writing blog.  And I am ok with that.  I have enjoyed the many different prompts and what has spilled onto the pages of this blog because of them.  I have enjoyed the camaraderie of fellow bloggers and the support they have given this newbie.  

However, I have few issues going on simultaneously.  Here is a little about each.

Confidence.  

What little I have is lost.  Perhaps I left it at CVS.  Perhaps at work.  Maybe even in the plumber’s butt crack.  If I had to guess, it is deep in the bowels of that large crevasse that was working on the sink!  Never to been seen again by the human species.  How do I retrieve it?  It was so small to begin with, a transplant from Who-ville!  At times it grew but mostly it stayed ever so small or shrunk even more! Imagine that, me with confidence in my writing!  So many jokes could be placed here.  Can I get some help from the local police?  Or Seal Team 6?  HELP!

Like

Secondly, everyone says they “like” the things I write.  But my mind questions “Do they really?”   I guess at times I’d like more constructive criticism.  Is that not proper blog etiquette?  Is there something I am missing?  Someday I’d someone to say” I don’t like it cause…..”, well you fill in the blank.  Heck, just fill it in with cause it’s shit!  I can accept that, maybe!  Well, that might make me lose my small amount of confidence (again) in the black crack of doom (see above).  Do people just say they like it to be cordial?  Help me here!  Be for reals!  

Who do I listen to?king

There are so many different items to read about improving your writing out in the world.  Whether is in print or in the vastness of the web.  Who do I believe?  So many varying opinions whether from writers who earned millions to the person who had one poem published in some obscure poetry site.  I wrote a post about Stephen King’s book “On Writing” recently (HERE IT IS), which by the way I thought was well done.  The book was a great read and I did learn some.  Now I have not read much SK but chose him as an example cause I had his book.  So my question, what advice to you adhere to and what books will make a positive difference in your writing?  Or do you just write? Write what comes out of our brain and hope someone out there likes what spills out?

I know my audience is small.  If I don’t enter a prompt very few even read my post.   However, I have enjoyed the two months of writing.  It is nice to finally have someone read some of the thoughts spilling out this confused mind of mine.

Till we meet again.

Good Day.

Mind of Shoo

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13 thoughts on “Lost Confidence. Need Help!

  1. Greetings, Shoo. I only just discovered your blog when you responded to the Master Class prompt. I have yet to find the time to delve into your other posts, but I feel I can address one of your issues – Like.

    It is generally an unspoken rule of the blog-o-sphere that if people comment, they will almost always comment in a positive way. No one wants to hurt someone else’s feelings and all that. If you desire stronger criticism, you will need to ask for it. A number of fiction bloggers I know always end their posts with something along the lines of, “Constructive criticism is always welcome.” and they mean it. They want it, just like you do. In truth, the piece you wrote for Master Class could have used a bit of improvement, but since we just “met,” who was I to tear your work to pieces? If I had, how was I to be sure you would return to Master Class? How was I to be sure you wouldn’t bad mouth me all over the internet? See what I’m getting at?

    So, make it known that you desire criticism on your work. You’ll get it and it’ll be constructive. No one will be mean about (that I’ve seen anyway).

    • Great points indeed! I started to blog to get over the fear of having others read my writing and thoughts though I have really kept to myself so to speak. But I want to improve. I show things to my friends locally and that’s all they say they like it. Even if i beg for critique. Drives me crazy and in my mind they are saying its crap! Thanks for your explanation of “like”., it is certainly very valid and opens my eyes to how things work and why. TY

  2. I have commented a few times. Your writing is developing. By writing in different genres and not just on ACoAs, you are reaching a wider audience who will also read the ACoAs stuff. AND it is good for fellow ACoAs to see you grow, enjoy life and that you can move on, then go back and deal with deep childhood issues again, take a break and have fun as well. Most os us are int the same boat- we read other stuff when there is a post and apparently success takes years in most cases.

    • Thanks Melanie. You certainly have been my biggest supporter. At times I can’t understand how you find some of the things I write as good. Guess it’s the ACoA in me that makes things difficult for me to take compliments. You make some valid points. I appreciate the support and kind words. Someday I will believe. I hope 🙂

      • the more we write, the more we can step out of our wounded emotions, discovering a river of intuitive, creative, right-brained imagination, ready to burst out from our inner selves/core/soul/spirit. We are not just wounded ,broken people bur that is the mud coating our true selves.

        This is what is starting to happen to me. This is what you are discovering. We have uncorked a healing river that takes on a life of its own because out true self is finally rising up and taking centre stage. I call this my spirit, hidden in God.

        Does this resonate with you? Just typing these words has me grinning, joyful and so pleased for you

  3. Hi Shoo, Confidence? In a writer? That’s a pretty tall order. If you get it, it lasts a nanosecond so appreciate it while it’s there. The ‘like’ thing. That varies: from my supremely inadequate stance of six months, I would say some like it because they like it, some like it so you will go and check out their blog. Can’t tell. Those that comment will mostly say nice things.
    If they say horrible things and you can find it in you to agree and it’s constructive OK. If it’s horrible and not constructive, I’d say delete it and forget it.
    What makes us write? Some terrible angst born inside us makes us write. Can’t do much about it. Only solution? Write some more.
    🙂

    • Thanks for reading and responding. I really appreciate it. It has always been hard for me to decipher who was “liking” cause they like it or cause they want me to visit. Insecurity about my writing makes putting myself out in the public difficult to handle at some moments. But I keep at it, waiting for my “nanosecond” of confidence to appear. Thanks for visiting and commenting, I appreciate it immensely.

  4. When I hit like and don’t comment, it’s either because I like it but I can’t think of anything interesting to say, or I’m pressed for time and intend to come back and comment further. I like what Pat said about confidence. It’s difficult to hold on to. There are two ways I know of to get better at writing. One is to read. And by that I mean books that interest you written by those whose writing you enjoy, and not necessarily books on how to write. The second: keep writing.

    • I am like you when it comes to using the “like” button. Reading is tough for me but I have made it a goal to read more this year. To keep writing..that will be a little easier for me. I don’t really put the work I am writing for publication here as I am afraid someone will steal my ideas. So I just write for the sake of writing here. I always search for critique. You too are a big supporter of my writing here and I always value and treasure your words. TY

  5. If I like something, I click like. If I love something, I comment. If I don’t like something, I leave without saying a word.

    I spent a few months participating in an intense online writers workshop. You weren’t allowed to submit anything until you’d written substantial commentary on three other submissions. I couldn’t do it. My mother trained me too well: if I don’t have anything nice to say, I don’t say anything.

    And most of the time, I didn’t agree with anything the other writers had to say about my writing.

    The best thing I learned from that experience was to trust my own opinion about my writing and to stop asking for ‘constructive criticism.’ I am my own worst and best critic, and the only one I need.

    • I am like you with the likes. I certainly would never leave a negative comment. I get what you are saying about trusting your own opinion. I believe in my ideas….it just needs tidying up by someone who is trained in this area. Thanks for commenting. Certainly gives me lots to ponder.

  6. Hello mindofshoo,

    I just came across your blog and this post drew me to comment. I have been blogging for less than 3 months and am slowly learning the etiquette myself.

    The confidence thing is a personal one I guess. I would encourage you to keep writing and to celebrate the pieces that you particularly enjoyed writing or that you thought captured what you wanted it to.

    You state that you “started this blog to communicate with fellow ACoAs”. Maybe you need to clarify further (for yourself at least) if you want your blog to discuss issues around being an ACoA and what such an experience is like etc. Because if you write about that subject, the Tags you use for the posts will provide readers links that they can follow because they are interested in the same subject. Also, if you are going for this approach, then you can play around with ways to submit entries for the Daily Prompt and Writing Challenges that draw the reader back to the subject of ACoAs.
    One fantastic example I found of this is here: http://beingspecial.org/2013/01/28/the-nightmare-of-public-affection/

    My blog was started to share my poetry and creative writing. I put a statement in my Home page encouraging people to comment on the pieces. But because I know not everyone will/can comment (for whatever reason), I have also included the ‘Rate This’ button on every post as a quick means of people leaving their opinion on the quality of the work.

    I am trialling a weekly music post for 2013 and this week, I used the opening paragraph of the post to draw readers’ attention to the fact that I was hoping to use the post to start some discussion on music (see: http://mightwar.com/2013/02/01/the-listening-booth-week-5). Cheeky I know, but this seemed the best way of letting people know what is I wanted from this particular series of posts. I don’t know if it will work, but we’ll see.

    You could also try providing a Contact Form for people to use to send you a critique of your work. Since this won’t show up in the comments at the bottom of the post, people may feel more able to be fully honest about their feedback and you can get the information you require, but privately – which may help if you’re not feeling too confident about how you feel about being critiqued. Instructions are here: http://en.support.wordpress.com/contact-form/.

    In the mean time, look around at other blogs and see how other bloggers are generating comments/interactions with their readers. It’s a trial and error process until you find a method that suits your personality and the purpose of your blog.

    Good luck with building your blog,

    might war

  7. Confidence and critiquing are two sensitive things. If you are wanting true critique, I don’t know if blogs are the best way to do that. A few years ago, I joined a forum. I thought I could handle the critique, but some people were so harsh it was just hurtful. I mean, offering suggestions and reactions is one thing, but ripping the first two sentences apart and then saying you couldn’t read any further is just mean. If that’s the type of feedback you’re looking for, something like writers.net can do that. I wouldn’t advise it unless you have leather skin, though 🙂 I don’t think it would do much for your confidence, either.

    I will say that my experience on online forums taught me that confidence can’t be built from others’ comments. It’s something that has to come from within. (On the flip side, we can’t put too much stock in the “I loved this piece” comments, because many people are just being nice, thinking we just want to read praise of our writing.).

    There are a few blogs that end each piece with a statement welcoming concrit…I might be more inclined to offer suggestions…I don’t know though….I have trouble with offering my suggestions because that action in itself implies that I have some authority to do so. I don’t.

    I can’t speak for others, but, I don’t click the “like” button very often, and if I do, it’s because it stood out for one reason or another. I also don’t say I liked something in a comment if I didn’t really like it. If I can’t think of anything positive to write, or if the other comments pretty much said what I wanted to, I simply leave and the blog owner never even knows I was there.

    Good luck finding your confidence…it takes that every time you publish a post!

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