Today I begin a short series on my blog, on the story, experiences and lessons I’m learning from the process of writing and publishing my first trade book, ‘Mosaic Of Grace’, which releases Feb 13. Today I begin with the core, basic lesson I learned – about the reality of dreams come true.
Not all of us may have had our wildest dreams come true, but many of us will have experienced something we desired for a long time becoming a reality.
A job. A relationship. Becoming a parent.
Or, for me, having a book published.
Right now, I’m building a team to launch my first trade book, (you can join the team yourself here) I’m working with marketing people and my publisher. I’m having to promote the book and it’s message.
It’s a dream come true, but it’s not like how I imagined. What I’ve found, is that the actual process of promoting and launching the book and its message is not just a process to help the book. In fact, it’s not even about the book at all.
No, this process is about my own growth.
The book might be a total flop, it might be a huge success, but that’s not the point. The point is what it’s exposing and confronting in me. This process is shining a light on my own insecurities, fears, and doubts – about myself. It’s challenging me to reflect on how valuable I believe I am, how much I believe in my own work, how much I believe I deserve success, and above all, what I believe others truly think about me.
It’s not pretty.
Promoting my book, recruiting people for my launch team, has been challenging so far. I’ve found the idea of messaging friends, asking them to support me in a new season of his life, quite uncomfortable so far.
Because, as it turns out, I’m insecure about whether many of my friends will actually believe in my work. I’ve realised that, deep down, I’ve doubted that people I know, the people I see regularly, will actually believe in my work and support me. Although I have no doubt of my friends genuine love for me, I now see I have had less confidence in how much they respect me, and what I have to say.
The Lesson & The Cost
Of course, these insecurities had been there all along. But having to promote my book and its message, and ask others to join me, to support me, has compelled me to confront this issue.
I found it easier to invite writers I’ve never met to join my launch team than friends I see regularly. Because, as crazy as it sounds, I simply found it impossible to believe any of them would, having met me, want to support my work.
And this was down to my own lack of confidence – not in my ability to write, nor in the message itself – but in my own value as a human being.
This is what the process of writing and publishing a book will do to you. In fact, if you ever get to the point of having your dreams come true, these issues will be confronted. Having to put your message out there in the world, in art of any kind, having your deepest desires become reality, will expose insecurities, fears, doubts inside of you. Feelings you’d either buried or just ignored.
You see dreams do come true. But they don’t come free. (you can tweet that)
There’s always a cost. And one of the biggest costs, is to confront who you really are, the truth about yourself…and do some inner work.
I have some more inner work to go through before this book launch. I’m hoping, and guessing, that the inner work I’m doing will be worked through before the launch day. Because not only does the work need to be ready to be released…I need to be ready for it to be released.
But this is why we make art. We don’t make art to please others, to impress, to promote ourselves or make money. We make art because it’s in us. It’s part of us. Something is birthed deep inside our soul and we have to share it….and because it’s come from us, the process of sharing it with others will confront what’s inside us.
In many ways, we create our art, but in the process of launching it, it recreates us, it shapes us. It’s a mirror to our soul, and once we’ve seen what’s inside, we have no choice but to confront it.
And this process might be challenging, it might even be painful…but it’s the only way to growth and healing.
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Join my Book Launch Team here.
Picture Source: Morguefile
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