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get in loser, we're fighting our imposter syndrome behind a denny's dumpster
aka happy new year
Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a spectacular holiday season and is ready to kick off 2023.
I am not a New Year’s Resolution person and usually, I don’t spend a whole lot of time reflecting on the prior year, but 2022 was a really formative year for me, so perhaps it warrants it. Just a little bit.
portrait of me on new years eve 2022:
This year, I:
Started a new job (and then quit after a week because it was red flags central, but boy do I have some fun stories for the Hollywood book I one day plan to write)
Started a new job that is actually good!
Wrote 2 manuscripts, and 2 partial manuscripts.
Entered KissPitch and was selected as a mentee with Love and Other Conspiracies.
Signed with a fantastic agent.
Sold Love and Other Conspiracies.
Which is all huge and very exciting! But one thing I have also learned is that accomplishments and what looks like forward progress does not make imposter syndrome go away… at all. We love that.
With every exciting wrung of the writing ladder I climbed, I couldn’t help but feel like I didn’t deserve it or didn’t work hard for it. My experience from querying to sub to selling a book was fast and I’m still like:
(I do wear more clothes than this guy when writing, tho, just to be clear)
I am sort of in that void era between announcing my book and all the excitement that comes with it, and the early stages of getting that book actually on shelves. I’m currently wrapping up a first round of revisions on L&OC, but there’s still a ways to go before a lot starts happening really fast. I don’t have regular updates or news to share, no Goodreads link to promote, or a cute cover to do little TikTok dances with, but publishing is slow and this will all happen in due time.
So naturally, my brain’s going to use that free time to tell me a whole bunch of conspiracy theories about myself.
Why you and not your friends? You’re not even that good of a writer. You just woke up one day and decided to be an author and it happened. No one thinks you worked hard to get here. Your book is only getting published because it’s hooky and quirky and weird, not actually good literature. Everybody thinks you’re just really annoying. No one is going to actually want to read your book, and if they do, you’ll just make it on everyone’s worst books of 2024 list.
If it’s mean, I’ve probably said it to myself lately. And it sucks because I tend to believe them over all the positive feedback I’ve heard. I think every writer I know has experienced this in some way or another and I’m learning that it never goes away. It just morphs into different unflattering shapes as you progress. One of the big themes of Love and Other Conspiracies is that you don’t have to believe what you’re told — not the terrible things people say about you, not the terrible things you say about yourself, and hell, you don’t have to believe in aliens either — and I think now is a good time to start taking some of that lesson to heart.
I don’t really do New Year’s Resolutions, but this year, I want to work on being nicer to myself. Is it going to work? Who knows, but I should be proud of how far I’ve come and the success I’m having and know that it’s not like I’m here for absolutely no reason. I think at the very least, it’s a good place to start.
A few other little goals or things I am eager to do this year:
Get good and consistent with social media. I know it doesn’t ultimately move the book sales needle that much, but I am terrible with it and I swear I couldn’t market water to a dude in a desert, but maybe I can learn.
Get better at engaging with writing communities I’m in. Don’t be afraid to yell and tell my fellow authors how stoked I am for their books or how happy I was to read them. I shouldn’t feel weird chatting with people in Discord servers or Slack servers that I’m new in. Everyone else was new at some point, too.
Don’t quit using my planner just because my handwriting is super ugly.
Really hunker down and revise what I hope will be Book 2. I’ve been picking away at it and am definitely behind my own self-imposed deadlines, but I’m realizing this is a project that does require many passes to get it right.
Draft something new! I really love drafting and I’ve been so heavy in revisions for months that I’m now itching to just create something new. I might take stabs at projects that have intimidated me in the past, and use this wide open creative space to pick away at it.
READ. I am aiming this year to be really on top of current releases and also improve my NetGalley feedback ratio. I’ve marked all my anticipated releases in my planner so I have no excuses.
Anyway, wishing everyone a happy and prosperous 2023! Here’s your first weird cryptid meme of the year: