Today, I ran across an interesting blog post from author Mary DeMuth. This paragraph has stayed with me:
It's time we step out of the shadows of fear as writers. It's time we view our art not only as art, but as a risky gift. Something that costs us. Something that worries us at night, makes us tremble in the day. Breaking the mold and innovating involves that kind of sacrifice. The question is, are you willing?
While writing Cissy’s story, not once did I think the story shouldn’t be told. Yet, after finishing it, I wondered if the themes were too ‘hard’ for a mainstream novel. I told myself that’s why I was reticent about sharing the draft of the book. In fact, I was scared out of my mind about offering up a part of myself and risking that it wouldn’t be received well.
A women’s group I belonged to used to refer to this as offering an egg. As we heal and grow stronger, we hold out our hands, gently offering a fragile part of ourselves. We do so tentatively at first, then more boldly. We constantly assess who we trust enough to hold our egg, to treat it with respect and to honor what the egg means to us.
Yes, Mary, I do worry at night and I do tremble in the day. Yet, I’ve never been so sure that the time is right to risk whatever awaits me as I offer up Cissy’s story to the world. So far, the people I’ve trusted to read my draft have given me the greatest gift of all: their certainty that the book will find a home one day.
Have you offered your egg to the world? Was it worth the risk you took?