So I have this idea for a new book. And it is of the “inspirational” variety, but it has a different spin than most inspirational books. And I really, really want to write it, but the thing is, I keep censoring myself. I keep feeling like an inspirational book ought to be more pious or something. Like someone writing an “inspirational” book maybe shouldn’t be as rough around the edges as I still am. Maybe someone writing an inspirational book shouldn’t even be thinking the F word, let alone writing it. So I keep edging my real voice out of it, for fear of what a potential audience might think of me. I hate when potential audiences look down their noses at me.
I wish I didn’t give a rip. I wish I could just feel safe, and not really care what others thought of me. I know of plenty of writers who are far more edgy than I am. My perceived edginess would be a joke in their world. I also know plenty of writers who play it safe. Some play it so safe I want to like their book, but something is missing. Technically it has all it’s supposed to, it’s followed the formula to a T, but somehow it’s a little…oh…squeaky clean and flat.
Maybe the safe writers really never say the F word in real life, so for them, it is legit to never write it. (And I’m not just talking about the F word, I’m talking about all the dark places we don’t want others to see).
I am not a mean person. Never is it my intention to hurt anyone. And yet, I feel somehow wrong, just for thinking what I think, and feeling what I feel. I’m guarded. You would not believe how much I self-censor, even on this blog. Can’t write that. Can’t write that. Can’t write that. I’m so afraid of offending anyone. This didn’t used to be the case. In my early blogging years I was so angry, I just didn’t care. Somehow over the years I’ve unconsciously begun to equate spirituality with not offending. But that feels like shrinking. And that can’t be right.
Writers especially get all up in arms over banned books. Censorship! Bad!
What about the books that never get written due to censorship in the writer’s own mind?
Potential audience? I’m asking you to move, and I’d like that space in my mind back. You’ve been squatting there too long.
You go be you.
I gotta be me.