Did you ever have that dream where you find yourself somewhere very public and you look down and you realize that you don’t have any clothes on? Everyone has this dream, right? For me that dream turns up enough times that I’ve looked up what it means in a dream dictionary.
Here’s a basic rundown of what it means.
- It may suggest you are feeling vulnerable or insecure.
- You may be afraid that you or your actions will be exposed to others.
- You may be feeling ashamed of yourself for something you said or did.
- The phrase, “the naked truth” comes to mind and so you may be “baring your soul” to someone or you are being open and honest with yourself about something.
Makes sense, right? It’s not like if you dream about a cow skeleton which apparently means that your mother in real life is not showing her emotions and is not responding to your needs. I’m not sure how that conclusion was reached and I also am curious how a cow skeleton just appears in a dream. Dreams are crazy things.
The reason that I bring up the whole naked dream thing is because I feel like I’m having one of those right now. Except I’m completely awake.
See, for the past year, I have worked alone on putting words on paper. Not always paper, of course. You know what I mean. I’ve been getting the words out of my head. I’ve been trying to arrange them to actually create people, to build worlds, to tell a story that I would want to read. Some days are great, the words just glide out. Other days are hard and it’s a struggle to reach my word count. But I’ve kept my word counts. I’ve kept my goals and in less than six months, I have finished two first drafts.
I have officially written two novels.
The problem is that I’ve gotten used to being alone with nothing but my words. I’ve become comfortable with hiding behind my computer screen. It’s safe here. There’s no danger of failure. There’s no one to tell me that my writing is bad or wrong or that I’ll never really be a writer. Of course, the flip side to that is there’s also no room for success, no way of reaching out to the world with my words and hoping that I can connect with someone.
When I tell my husband how desperately I want to be a writer, he always asks, “Do you write?”
I know where he is going with his line of questioning so I usually huff out a sigh or roll my eyes. He thinks that if I write, then I am a writer. I think if I am a writer, then I need people to read what I write.
It’s not too different from the thought experiment about a falling tree. If a tree falls in the woods and nobody’s there to hear it, does it make a sound? If a writer writes two novels and never lets anyone read it, is she still a writer?
I know. I know. It’s different. Plenty of people write because they enjoy it and it doesn’t matter if anyone reads it. Think of all of the people who write in diaries or journals. They aren’t any less of a writer because they keep their words private. But that’s not me. I want people to read what I write. I want to put it out there, even if it’s scary and I feel overexposed and I feel like everyone is going to point and laugh.
I want to be a writer and I want to be the sort of writer who writes things that people want to read. So, that means, I have to suck it up and I have to share. This blog? It’s practice, a way of gradually sharing my words with readers. What I hope it will become is what I hope all of my words will become, a connection out there to the rest of the world. I’m going to ignore the part of me that feels overexposed, that feels vulnerable. I’m not going to be afraid.
So, this first post is it. This is me stepping out there, feeling like I got nothing on except my words.