Peris Khambatta, the Indian model, actress and author, who was also the first citizen of India to present an Academy Award in 1980 once said- “Creative people are very insecure people because they don’t know whether people like them or are in awe of them. That insecurity always comes out. It makes them a better actor, I feel.

But  is this “Insecurity” word only applicable to actors or it’s applicable to every person who is involve in this creative process. I believe every person who is creating something new with his dedication and effort, every person who is a star in his own world does not matter if his world is big or small some how insecure. He has a fear inside him to never let the creative well in him to dry up.

We all are humans, not God; so end of the day we all want that lime light which is falling on us in form of our readers, viewers or fans to never fade up. And to be honest, I do believe there is nothing bad in that. The fear of losing or the insecurity in us somehow helps us stay focus on what we want from life, it helps us to make our next creation better than the previous one. Yes, sometimes that affects us personally but it’s part of this game which we always wanted to play i.e. to create something of our own with the talent God has given us and with the effort we can give to nurture that talent.

When we try to create something, we hardly think about terms like “Fame”, “money”, “appreciation” and “recognition”. At that time our focus solely lies on our work. We do what our heart says. A writer writes those words which he feels need to be spread. A actor acts the way his heart tells him to react. A painter uses those colors in his painting which his heart chooses for him. I do not believe there is any specific set of rules or regulation applied to any of us while we try to create something new. But once we are done, we want others to appreciate the work. We want the recognition in return to the effort and time we spend in creating something, that is no one has ever done before.

When someone asks me, “Why do I write?” I answer- because I enjoy it. But is this the right and honest answer? I am really not sure. There are millions of other jobs, then why I chose this specific field. So when I try to think honestly, the answer I get is- “I believe I can be really good at it. It’s a process where I can create an identity of my own. And most importantly I hope it’s a field where I can enjoy every moment when I am working.” And if you will ask the same question to yourself I hope you will get the similar answer.

Still a creative process is different from every other process, because here the process never completes once we are done. I do believe that, here the actual process starts once we are done with our work. Because to continue with this process a person needs  his last creation to be appreciated. Because in this field reputation changes very easily and quickly. The light of fame and success falls on a specific area which is surrounded with darkness. So a person has to fit in to that specific area, so that people can feel his presence. And  this thought and realization makes each creative person somehow little bit insecure.

I know how much effort and time, I have given to my blog. So yes I am afraid of losing whatever momentum I have gained with my blog. I sometimes feel insecure. I do fear, “what if tomorrow I will loose my readership?”  But this insecurity never stops me from writing, because as I have said before it’s a process which I completely enjoy. But yes, it helps my cause for sure. It reminds me to work harder. It helps me to think about something about which I have never ever thought before, so that I can give birth to something new and unique. It helps me to respect every reader, who takes his time to read my thoughts because I want his time again and again. Similarly It helps me to respect every other person who writes, because I want him/her to keep on writing so that I can learn to think and see this same world in a new and different way as he/she is doing.

So yes, there are times when it is better to live with some fear and insecurity in us. Who knows, that insecurity may lead us to a new path, on which no one ever went before.

Each one of us requires the spur of insecurity to force us to do our best.” -Harold W. Dodds

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70 thoughts on “The fear of being a writer!

  1. excellent quote! great piece Arindam, really true no matter what style writing one does…we all could use a team of personal cheerleaders rooting for our writing, LOL, but that doesn’t happen does it? So we keep writing because we have to. :)

  2. I relate well to the insecurity. Watching the ebb and flow of readers play against that for me. I have a handful of regular commenters, but other than that I have no clue if what I write is rubbish or wonderful. This is why our greatest motivation is writing for the pure love of it. Nothing else about it that you can’t count on. I write because it allows my soul to breathe, just as I’m sure is true of anyone else who enjoys creativity. I really enjoyed this article and I’m glad you posted it.

    • You very rightly said, that the involvement of us in this process of creating something of our own, allows our souls to breathe. And to be honest, I know You are a really good writer. So I hope you will keep on writing without much caring about the number of reader aspect. As, I am very much sure your blog will keep on growing with time.
      Thanks a lot for taking your time to read this one and commenting on it. I really appreciate it.

  3. I really like your closing sentence, just before the quote, about the new path where no one went before. And that is why we write. We never know what is going to resonate with our readers, and be the next big thing.

    • Yes, no one of us is sure of, “what will work for or readers?” We can give all our efforts and just wait for the feedback. :) Thanks a lot Patti for the visit.

  4. I loved this post, Arindam. Well said. For me, I know I will always have that insecurity but I’ll keep on trying to write and create simply because the joy of doing so drives me. I almost have to write, it’s an urge to express myself.

    • Thank you Darla. I hope this urge to express ourselves makes us insecure. Because we try to express ourselves in the best way possible and in front of a larger group of people. Just like you, I will also try my best to keep on writing. Because through writing we can create our own world, characters which we want to see and feel, thoughts which we feel worth pondering. And I enjoy every bit of it. Keep on expressing yourself Darla, I can tell you will get huge number of people to appreciate your expressions through writing.

  5. Arindam, another superb post. I have always been extremely sensitive. But over the years, with time and experience and surrounded with a lot of love, I am far more confident than I was 30 years ago. Or ten, or five! It only gets better.

    You also say ‘we’ create without regard for terms and such. I’m not sure that this is true for all creative people – some really do get wound up in the money thing. As for me, I write no matter whether I’m being heard, seen, or am making money. I write because that’s simply who I am, and after almost sixty years of life on this planet, I can honestly say I Am A Writer. If one can identify with any one thing!

    Cheers, and keep on writing! I doubt you’ll ever lose your audience!

    • Thanks a lot Bela. Yes, confidence can only come with experience. And a person can gain that confidence in him, once he continues with the creative process he enjoys. And your writing shows you are not only a really talented writer but also an experienced writer who never lets his work to get affected by any other factor.
      I use “we” instead of “I” just to show that majority of the people who are part of this creative process thinks similar. :) But I will agree with you, there are people who get wound up in the money thing. To be honest I too believe this is not the way, to stay focused on the work while the money factor going though a person mind.
      It’s always a pleasure to hear what you have to say. I am glad that, you have shared your thought here.

      • Aww, thanks so much! Yes, there are the downsides of aging (obviously!), but I really love the part about not caring what others think so much. See now, you have something to look forward to! ;)

        And your writing is bold and daring – I like it very much. You’re not afraid of exposing your vulnerabilities. I wish you all the luck in the world with it.

  6. Arindam, you’ve sized this up correctly. You compared your writing to giving “birth to something new and unique.” I agree. What you write is comparable to having a child. You worry about it before the child is born … and after the child is up and running. That might account for the insecurity writers feel.

    I can’t focus on the numbers … yes, I do check the views, “likes,” and comments my blogs get. But the truth is … one week I had more than 400 views. The next week, the numbers are still respectable – but not as good as my top week. I do not let the numbers determine how I feel about myself as a writer.

    So I apply my energies on improving my writing, telling the best stories that I can. Observing your blogs, I believe you do the same. Great work, my friend.

    • Yes I always believe that, the whole process of creativity is like giving birth to a baby. I am glad to hear that, you never let the statistics to determine how you feel about yourself as a writer. That is the way to go. We all need appreciation, but what is important that we should never let that fear or insecurity to affect the way we work.
      And yes, I too do the same. Thanks a lot for the visit Judy. I am glad that you enjoyed reading this post.

  7. Arindam what a lovely write up, I am never quite sure about my posts, every time before publishing i hesitate read the preview more times and even then never sure, but i do feel this insecurity make me strive for better, for better write ups and styles,trying to find out what clicks..

    • I hope we all have our share of insecurities in us and the best part is that, it helps all of us to strive for the best. :) Thanks a lot for taking your time to read this post.

  8. As writers and artists we pour so much of ourselves into our work that it’s impossible to remove our feelings. I have yet to meet a writer who is 100% secure in his or her work. Insecurity is that little nudge that makes us want to be better–that inspires us to dig deeper, to re-write that same sentence over and over until it sounds just right.

    Blogging is both a curse and a blessing for one’s sense of security. The blogging community is nothing but supportive, but some days people are just too busy in their daily lives to squeeze in time to read what you have written. You have no way of knowing that so you may interpret fewer readers or comments as though your blog post wasn’t interesting enough. You never know so you have to continue writing from your heart and not worry about whether people like it.

    By the way, I like this post a lot.

    • You said it perfectly with this line “Insecurity inspires us to dig deeper, to re-write that same sentence over and over until it sounds just right”. It’s applied to all of us.
      Yes now I started realizing that sometimes some of our best works go unnoticed due to various factors as you pointed out. So it’s really difficult to measure our growth as a writer while we blog. So now I hardly get disappointed when I see one of those posts which took lots of my effort and time got not much comments or likes.
      I will keep on writing from my heart Becky. I am glad you like this post. :)

  9. We all are afraid to express ourselves in one way or another, because we fear the “evaluation and critique.” Many times the errors can teach and improve us over time … I appreciate what you wrote and I can share your thougths. Perhaps, like me, there are also people who write for themselves first … without wanting to forcibly please others… it’s a form of egotism, but this really allows to write what the heart dictates, uninfluenced by the “mode” (unfortunately always brought up to express violence and sexuality).
    Too bad I haven’t had jet the pleasure to publish translations of my novels in English … :-)
    I would like to know what you think!

    • I wish and hope you will publish the translations of your novels in English soon, so that we can read them and appreciate your work. I am very much sure they must be worth reading.
      Yes there are people who writes for themselves. I too feel I write for myself, because I enjoy writing. But there are days, when I write for others too, when I try to spread a message with my writing. If I only try to write myself then I will only write about love, relationship, family and society. But the question is- if I will do so, then the creativity in me will ever grow? I want grow as a writer, so that I can capture some of my thoughts in humorous way. I am not saying I am completely write, but this is how I feel about writing. We all need to write for ourselves and others too.

  10. Neat post Arindam..

    It takes courage to face your honest feelings and acknowledge the fact that while writing does interest you, all the appreciation and encouragement that comes your way is also a reason why we want to write more and more.

    I am only a couple of months old in the blogging department and i can already tell you how the pressure of churning out a better post that the previous one feels.

    We are all insecure people, and we want our clique of people to egg us on, to tell us we are not that bad and that we can be great.

    But yes, all those things are secondary. The biggest motivation HAS to come from within.
    And if we are not able to enjoy what we do and if we are faking, i doubt we can fool ourselves too long.

    Nice post :) You have a new regular follower

    • Thanks a lot Zinal.
      I will completely agree with you on whatever said. Everything else is secondary, the biggest motivation is our love for our work. We have to gather that much strength in us to not allow any other factor influence our approach towards our work. We all need to be honest with our thoughts, so that we can stay honest with whatever process we are involve in. It may be writing, singing, painting or acting.
      I know your blog is a new one. But I am sure , you will get lots of people to appreciate your work during your journey towards a wonderful writer. Keep up the great work.
      I am glad to have a new follower. Cheers! :)

  11. another honest post very straight forwardly put. I love that quote at the end. It is so true! You know we tend to paint certain emotions as being negative. Insecurity being one such. but as you rightly point out some amount of insecurity is needed to keep one focused. its all about striking a balance. Reaching the perfect mix! great post!

    • Thanks a lot. I was never sure that, all of us thinks quite similarly as far as insecurity is concern. :) Yes sometimes negative emotions are really helpful to bring positivism in to our life and work. I hope we can all reach that perfect mix.

  12. To become a writer one should have guts to write, that you are having I feel. That is why
    you could write about being writer. I really appreciate your knowledge for wrting process
    which everyone cannot enjoy it, however they have got good imginations, thoughts, theme,
    creativity, they cannot reveal from their mind by writing. That talent you have got Arindam,
    I wish you all the best.

    • Thank you for all the good things you said about me. These words were very inspiring. But to be honest I am not sure if I have guts to write but what I realize is that, I love to write. And I do believe that, when a person enjoys what he/she is doing every thing else works accordingly.

      Thanks a lot for the wish. It means a lot. I just wanted to ask you, “is Shanthisethuraman your real name? “

  13. Most people are insecure when they put out their creations for public scrutiny. I kept my blog private for two weeks before I picked up the guts to go live! Sometimes, even when the response is good, I wonder whether people are just being nice :-) But I agree with you that the insecurity makes us strive for perfection

    • Yes, just like you some times I also get confused seeing the response is good. But again we can’t read the other people’s mind. So we have to accept the words written by them which we see in the comment section. May be insecurity is the sign of the fact that, we are seriously involved with the job we are doing. :)

  14. I am fortunate to have very creative people in my life. What I note about them is that their “work” is created through a passionate heart, that is why it is always seconded guessed or surrounded by insecurities. It could be the most beautiful and insightful piece to the rest of the world, it doesn’t matter, they know the flaws. Creativity is extremely personal…its from the soul, it can never be competitive. Great piece. You always get us thinking!

    • It’s really great that you have so many creative people in your life. I do not have a single one yet. :) And yo pointed out very rightly, a person who creates something may get all the appreciation, still he knows the flaws. It shows to what extent that person is involve in the process. I hope it is the process of competing with ourselves than competing with someone else.
      I am glad I could make you think. Because it’s always my pleasure to listen, what you talented people have to say.

  15. Creativity is a double-edge sword. Actors, writers, athletes, etc. do what they love, but also want to bring that pleasure to others.

    You are doing a wonderful job with your blog Arindam, not to worry.
    Blessings – Maxi

  16. We’re a very tender lot – and wrestle the agonies routinely. I once had a boss who would ask me if I was afraid or nervous before we began seminars. My answer was always “yes” and he’d say, “Good. Otherwise I’d be scared you didn’t care!”

    I usually tried to hit him with a napkin!

    • I am glad you did not try to hit him with a brick or a iron rod Amy aunty. :)
      Thank you for sharing such a wonderful instance of life. You always pass on a lesson to me with your words. And let me tell you, I value your lessons a lot.

  17. I can very much relate to what you write in this post. But I am not sure if the conclusions about how to react to that insecurity we all have in us is necessarily the best – for the creative process. Yes, there is no way around denying the fact that most of us craves recognition, but I think if that desire starts to influence our creative work, we are about to lose that personal vocation that set our creativity apart from other artists. Because then we start to think about what will gain that recognition, what does bring most “fans”. We need to live with and accept the insecurity that comes with a creative life, but we cannot let it take over the creative process.

    Like you I want to keep the readership of my blog, I think we all do. But this past two and a half months I have not been able to follow up on comments and likes due to an extremely busy period. And my readership has dropped significantly. Now that I am finally back and can spend more time in the blog sphere again, my first thought was “how can I most quickly regain my readership?” But then I realised the question was all wrong. I need to continue the way I have always done my blog – from my heart. And if readers don’t come back, so be it. I have to be honest with my own creative process. And I believe in the long run I can only gain from it. The insecurity is still there – but I won’t let it take possession of me.

    • You explained this whole thing so beautifully and rightly. Yes, I also believe the same. we should never let that fear or insecurity to affect the way we work. Because if we will let that to happen, then we are going to loose control on our minds. When I say I am insecure it means, I feel afraid to loose that dedication and respect for my work because then my readers will not feel I worth their time.
      Sometimes I write at 4AM morning when everyone else prefer to sleep, as I did while writing this post. To be honest I do so, because I want to give all my efforts and time to keep this momentum. So when I say sometimes insecurity helps us it means It helps us to stay focused and dedicated to what ever creative process we are involve with.
      Just like you, I will try my best to never let that insecurity to take control of me.
      And I do not think your readers are going away from you. All of your readers like me, knows why we visit your blog and what are you going to offer us with writing.
      Thanks a lot Otto for always explaining things which are complicated and leaving a lesson for me with your words. Have a great Sunday!

      • Thank you for the nice words. I think your dedication and respect for your work will make you strong and bring you to places you don’t even know about today. Enjoy the rest of the weekend, you too.

        • Thanks a lot. I am still waiting for your feedback on the pictures I took to interpret inside. Every time I post a picture in my blog I wait for your feedback, as I have hardly any knowledge of photography. :)

  18. Wow, not only is your post today filled with so much I can relate to but all of your reader’s comments as well. I really liked Otto’s last sentence:
    ‘The insecurity is still there – but I won’t let it take possession of me.’
    Insecurity should be used as a tool to keep us ‘on fire’ and passionate about the craft we choose to share our creativity in. If an actor never has an insecure moment either at auditions or backstage before a performance then, I fear, they may be intoxicated (in a bad way!) The best actors I have come across have been the most insecure ones…hmm, now is this not interesting?

    I say we welcome our insecurities, use them to make us better in our creativity but never allow them to, as Otto states, ‘take possession’ of our creative self.

    • Absolutely, Otto said it so perfectly; we must not let that insecurity to take control of our creativity. If we will let that to happen, then we are finish.
      And I also sometimes wonder about the insecurities about all these famous creative people. May be they are successful, because they know how to deal with this insecurity in us properly.
      I will try my best never let this insecurity thing to take control of me Sunshine.
      Thanks a lot for always stopping by and leaving few thoughts to ponder and a smile on my face. :) Have a great week ahead!

  19. You write so honestly! Most importantly, I can completely relate. More often than not, it doesn’t matter what you put into the world, you will always feel insecure about it. I’m glad to know that I’m not alone. Harold Dodds was right, our insecurities help us become better and better. Wonderful post!

    • Thanks a lot Indira. Yes, it’s a human tendency; so rather than trying to hide our insecurity we need to accept it. And to be honest I do not see anything bad in that.
      It’s a pleasure of mine to see you here and to read your thought.

  20. Writing is the hardest part of blogging and is why I don’t post more often than I do. It makes me feel so self-conscious. It was good for me to read your post and the comments, because it made me realize that I’m not alone….gave me a little confidence boost!

  21. Yes I too believe writing is the hardest part of blogging. As here we have to keep the word count in my so that, people will not find our posts to be too long to read. Then again to get readers who will read our posts is also quite challenging. But I hope these are the challenges which help the creativity in us to grow with time.
    I hope you will post often with out much caring about any other aspects. I know how creative you are, so I am very much sure you will take your blog to the highest level with time.
    I am glad that my post and comments of fellow writers gave you little confidence. And yes remember, you are not alone. :)

  22. I appreciate your words and really relate to them. Every time I write a piece I feel a sense of vulnerability. You never know how others will interpret what you say in your writing. Exposing a piece of yourself can be liberating but also a little scary. Thanks for your insight.

    • Yes, I share your thought. I am also sometimes afraid to share piece of my self through my writing others. As I am not sure how someone else going to take that. But with time I realized that, I need to be honest with my readers, because that’s the way they want to listen my thought.
      Thanks a lot for the visit and sharing your thought. Nice to meet you. :)

  23. When we love doing somethin lets not think bout wat d world thinks :)
    Insecurity helps us produce better yes… To produce somethin best we’ll ve to overcome it.. to overcome our insecurity we’ve to accept it first..
    Arindam tat s one amazing post…

    • Thanks a lot. :)
      Yes if we love doing something, then we need to continue with that without caring about others. And you said it very rightly, to overcome our insecurity we need to accept it first. Thanks a lot for taking your time to read this one.

  24. Fantastic article, Arindam. I started writing about 2 years back and though I love writing, it is the appreciation that spurs me to continue writing, and writing better. It was also the insecurity of losing my readers that made me overcome severe writer’s block that lasted me for about 3 months. Yes, I love to write but I am not writing a private diary and every comment counts to egg me on to think, write, share…

    • I am glad to meet people like you, who rather than hiding their insecurity accept it. I am also one of them. I like the way you said, “I love to write but I am not writing a private diary”- it’s so true. We write because we want people to read our thoughts and give their feedback on them.
      Thanks a lot for sharing your honest and wonderful thought here. Great to meet a person like. Hope to meet you again and again through blogging. :)

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