I'm not a high energy zooming around town kind of person. I'm also not a social go out to coffee shops and swap ideas with my critique group kind of writer. In fact people don't normally know when I'm working on a new story. At the most, if someone asks, I'll give them a word count. I just don't like talking about my writing until I'm ready for people to see it.
Recently I've been thinking about trying to get out and do more. Send stuff to my critique partners before it's completely finished (they seem comfortable sending that kind of stuff to me). But every time I try to do that it makes my skin crawl and I'm afraid I'll break out in hives next.
Is some of that fear?
I get the same fears even after I've cleaned and polished my MS before sending it out. The difference is, after I send out the finished MS I feel better. It's done. It's out there. I have presented the best face I could.
When I send out unfinished work I feel exposed and vulnerable. That puts me on edge and makes me much less likely to take criticism well (constructive or other wise).
So what do I need to do about this? Keep pushing and exposing myself until I get used to it? Pretend I like doing this? Fake it?
I need to respect my self and my proses.
Does that mean be lazy and never push myself? No. That's not it either. Each of us has a comfort zone. A way we like to do things. A way we are good at doing things. We need to test the limits of that zone. Push them, expand them. But that doesn't mean leap out of them and force ourselves to fit into someone else's mold.
Everyone has to work to find their own proses. That alone is hard. Then you face pressure from others to fit into their mold. Most times it isn't even hostile pressure, just well meaning friends who are just trying to help. It's hard to stick to your guns and respect yourself, but in the end it pays off. You end up knowing yourself. Your strengths and weaknesses. You will know what you can do and how to do it. That alone can be half the battle.