IWSG – 10/14 – How to be a Better Writer: For the Fearful

Hello writers! It’s the first Wednesday of the month and we know what that means: It‘s time for another meeting of the Insecure Writers Support Group – #IWSG! 

Click on the Image to Join!

Click on the Image to Join!

  My hero, the amazing Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh founded this amazing group and this month is the IWSG’s FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF THEIR WEBSITE!! How awesome is that?



The awesome co-hosts for the October 1 special anniversary posting of the IWSG will be Kristin Smith, Elsie, Suzanne Furness, and Fundy Blue!


Title: How to be a Better Writer: For the Fearful

Topic: Writing

Bio: Lily Eva Blake aka Eva E. Solar, former EMT, brain hemorrhage/stroke survivor on a quest to become a published author. Blogs: lilicasplace and My Miracle Life

Permission Granted to include post in IWSG Guide to Publishing and Beyond.

Even though I’ve written since the age of seven, the only people who ever read my work were my parents and my teachers. The teachers were a requirement! It didn’t matter I was an A student in English and Writing. I always felt I could’ve done better. I waited until the last-minute to hand in any writing assignments so I could continue working out any kinks. A tweak here. A word there. I was always afraid my work was never good enough. Sound familiar?

Then you’re like how I used to be – one of the fearful ones. No, it’s OK. There’s no shame in it as long as you can admit it to yourself, accept it, and find ways to defeat the fear that chokes you, imprisons you, like I did. It’s not about our work not being good. It’s about letting fear take over our lives to the point where we hoard our stories so that they never see the light of day. We may not be great writers when we start but we sure can get better as we continue our journey!!

I had folders full of stories that had gone unnoticed for years, until recently. A major life event had to happen to put the fire under me to finally pursue my dream with vengeance. I’m working on a lot of them now. I submitted my first flash fiction story for an online Halloween meme contest in 2013. 2013!! This is someone who’s been writing since the age of seven; I’ll be 50 next year, God willing. I was petrified, but I entered. I didn’t win, but I placed. Please don’t let that be you. Don’t let fear steal your dreams from you like it almost did mine. Below is a short but simple list of things that can help you on your journey to becoming a better writer, especially made for the fearful.

  1. Practice, practice, practice
  2. Take a writing class (Coursera and Open U offer free classes every so often from basic grammar and sentence structure to fiction writing). Worth the look. You can have them alert you when classes will be upcoming.
  3. Start a Blog. This will be your personal space to write, meet other bloggers with similar interests. It’s a wonderful opportunity to find other new writers who are just starting out on their journey. It was through my blog that I was fortunate enough to find the Insecure Writers Support Group.
  4. Join a writer’s group that you’re comfortable with. If you’re like me and have trouble with transportation, find a good online group. They’re out there. You just need to look.
  5. Read, read, and read. Yes. In order to be a better writer, you have to read books by various authors. It will show you different styles of writing, points of view, scenes and settings, etc. Plus you’ll open your mind to all sorts of new genres and sub-genres, and niches. Since reading outside my norm, I’ve never looked back.
  6. Even when you’re afraid, submit work. It’s ridiculously difficult for someone who is fearful, I get it. Start small if that’s what makes you comfortable. When my piece placed in that Halloween meme contest, I was so stoked, I entered NaNoWriMo that November, and won. Need I say more?
  7. Expect rejections. It’s going to happen; that’s just life. Don’t let it dampen your spirit or bring you down. Some of the best known authors could wallpaper rooms of their homes with the rejection letters they received the years before becoming well-known. Growing a thick skin is a MUST. It will take time. I haven’t fully grown mine yet, but it’s getting there.
  8. Believe in yourself and in your talent, but remember success is not going to be handed to you. Be ready to work for it. You will get out of your writing what you have put in to it.

Best of luck in your writing journey.





My IWSG Post on Fear

Good morning blogger family and fellow writers! It’s the first Wednesday of the month and we all know what that means right? InsecureWritersSupportGroup  It’s time for another monthly meeting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group!  (Everybody throw your hands in the air, and wave ’em like ya just don’t care!) Um, yeah…sorry, I was having flashbacks of my younger years — way, way back when I had little fear.

But before I get started, let me just say that the AMAZING Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh, who is an entity in himself, founded this spectacular group.  And to quote from the IWSG website:

“Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and fears without appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!”

I also would like to thank this month’s co-hosts for the phenomenal job they’re doing; I learned first hand after my first co-hosting last month. 🙂  You rock:

Mark Koopmans Joylene Nowell Butler Lisa Buie-Collard and Elsie Amata

When I started blogging last February, I was fearful of so many things. What if no one followed me? What if no one liked my posts? Or even worse, what if no one thought I could put together a decent sentence, let alone write something worth reading?

It took months before I felt comfortable enough to let my guard down a little. I began writing about the events leading up to and after my hemorrhage. It was a personal story, one that I haven’t finished yet, because life happened to get in the way. But I put it out there. Then in October, I entered a blog contest called Spooktoberfest by a great duo of bloggers: Entertaining Interests and Bouquet of Books. It was the first time I entered ANYTHING of mine in competition having it read and judged by other people. Talk about fear? I was petrified, but excited at the same time. The great thing was that I got my little story out there; it made it to a runner-up spot, and I’m still here to talk about it! 🙂

I’ve learned that I can’t move forward if I don’t face my fears. I’m taking two online writing classes with Gotham’s Workshops based in NYC and I have to put my work out there for critique by my teacher and my fellow students in what’s known as ‘The Booth’.I work extremely hard to get my work done and although I’m still afraid sometimes, I don’t allow it to rule me anymore.

This blog is slowly going back to its original purpose: to chronicle my writing journey. I’ve created another blog My Miracle Life, that will focus on my life post hemorrhage.

With the help of a very, very small network of offline friends, my blogging community, and the IWSG, I’ve got this. See? I ain’t skeered!!!


IWSG Wednesday!

Another month has gone by and it’s time for another post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group.  The amazing Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh founded this phenomenal group just over two years ago.

InsecureWritersSupportGroupThe group meets on the first Wednesday of every month. It’s a safe haven where writers can admit their insecurities and put their anxieties out into the world, without fear of criticism or embarrassment. If you’d like to join our support group, please click on the image to your left. You won’t regret it!

I’ve always been afraid to put my writings out in the open. I’ve never let people read my stories or essays, unless they were my teachers. I’ve always been afraid of what people would think. Then I noticed, when I started writing about what happened with my bleed two years ago, I didn’t really care what anyone thought. I needed to let it out. I started getting some feedback; and it made me feel OK. If one person wanted to read about my illness, cared enough to reach out and say something positive, then maybe someone would want to read my stories too.

After being Blitzed earlier this week, I made it a point to try to thank every blogger, tweep and Facebooker who commented on my page. I found so many unbelievable blogs; I fell in love. There are so many people out there, just like me; trying hard to overcome their fears and insecurities; to tell the stories they’ve wanted to tell. Heck, I have a ton.

I am going to keep doing what I always do. Write. But instead of just writing, this time I will actually submit.

I went so far as to sign up for a flash fiction contest. I am going to throw my fear out the window because I’ve already committed. I don’t know how the story will turn out, but I know that I am going to try my best. ((Gulp)). Win or lose, at least it will be out there and I will have gotten over one major fear.

That’s all I have for this month’s IWSG.

As a side note, I’m sorry I haven’t posted Part 5 yet, but I had to take care of this first. Part 5 of my Stroke journey is nearly done and should be posted no later than Saturday.

Until next time, love you guys!