Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Monday, January 25, 2016

Why should I write this book?

Some time ago, I seriously considered ditching a nonfiction WIP. I haven't done so yet, but I have come very close to it. I thought about ditching it, or even handing it over to another nonfiction author to take on, because I started to doubt myself as an author. I started to doubt how this book would be perceived. What if people looked at the very meager success I have achieved as an author, see this new book by me – and its title! – and think it’s not worth their time? What if the book doesn’t get the attention it deserves? (It’s a reference book for authors.) What if people see MY name as the author and think the book sucks?

What if, what if, what if.

For a long time, I tackled with these doubts. I really struggled with them. They made me seriously consider stopping work on this book and just letting it collect dust on the hard drive. I believed every single doubt I had and actually thought I was not the right person to write this book.

And it didn’t help that one of my publishers wasn’t interested in it!

But then I realized something that has made me change my mind: This book is NEEDED. There is book other book like this on the market and that makes it unique. This book has good information in it because I know it would be useful to at least one author out there. And, this book should be written, because the material in the book WORKS! I can stand behind everything in this book because I have “been there, done that” with all the info it has in it.

So, because the info in this book actually works and has been put to the test, I really feel that it should be written and it should have a chance for publication. I really feel, now, that I shouldn’t give up on it.

I came to this realization after reading the Q&A section in Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s newsletter, Sharing with Writers. It was the January 22nd issue and you can check it out here. In the piece titled “Making Our Goals Personal Resolutions,” Carolyn encourages people to read books by different authors to see what kind of ideas they have to share. Mostly, she suggests writers who have “been around for a while” because their “advice can be trusted.”

That’s when I realized: Hey, I’m a writer who has been around for a while! I have been an author for over 10 years and I’ve stayed as involved and active in the author community, as well as writing and publishing, as was possible. (There were two writing communities I had to leave because I no longer felt that I was welcome.) And the info in this book I am writing is solid, because it’s been tested and proven to work. So it must count as “trusted advice.” I think so, anyway.

The book could still mean something to somebody out there. Some unpublished writer out there or some author out there who hasn’t thought these ideas yet. I know there are a lot of people who have very low opinions of me and I'm not exactly a bestselling or multimillion dollar earning author people would go crazy over, but I believe that the book should stand on its own merit for what kind of information it contains and not by who wrote it. I have to believe this to be so, anyway.

So having reached this conclusion, I will resume work on this book. I will write it to the end and send it off for publication. I believe in this book, even if nobody else does. And I only hope that is good enough for the book to have some kind of importance to somebody who might actually find the information in it useful.

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  • At 8:26 PM , Blogger Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

    Dawn, I am so glad you are subscribed to my newsletter and that you read it. But mostly I glad that I said something that inspired you share your experience and wisdom. It's what writers do--but sometimes we slip. Yay, YOU!

    Carolyn Howard-Johnson
    Author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers

  • At 1:22 PM , Blogger Dawn Wilson said...

    Thanks, Carolyn! :) I appreciate the comment. Thanks for taking the time. Your newsletter is awesome! And that issue I mentioned in this post was so much more awesome that I downloaded it and saved it. I'll be reading it again. :) Keep up the good work! And thanks again for reminding this author the reason why we even got into writing books in the first place. You rock!

  • At 12:44 PM , Blogger Martha Jette said...

    No one is harder on a writer than the writer his or her self. Feeling inadequate to tackle a non-fiction topic, particularly if the writer has no personal experience in a particular area can be daunting. In such a case, it is a matter of getting the right people who have had such an experience to share their words in your book. In your case, you are writing about what you know so you really can't fault yourself in any way. Go for it Dawn!

  • At 1:19 PM , Blogger Dawn Wilson said...

    Thanks, Martha. I so agree with what you have said. We writers sure are hard on ourselves! I personally want to do my very best and give my all to each book I write or am involved with. So I want things to be perfect and everything as it should be. It's not easy for me to include people in a nonfiction book anymore because they want the book to be published RIGHT NOW or they get tired of waiting months for it to come out or they don't want an e-copy; they want the print. With this book, I have not yet included anyone. I don't know if I will. It might take me a while to finish writing it but now I do feel a renewed sense of determination to get it done. I appreciate it that you took the time to read and comment on this blog. Thank you! You rock!


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