5 Fears that Immobilize Writers by Steph Beth Nickel


It takes courage to parachute out of a plane, to ski down a mountain—and to write.

“Why?” you ask.

Writers must overcome the following fears—and so many more:

Does the world really need one more book, blog post or article?

No matter how many times we’ve asked and answered this question, there are quiet moments when many of us revisit this idea.

In times like this, we must remember that no one can express the ideas we want to express exactly as we can. And just maybe someone needs to hear these ideas the way only we can say it.

Am I skilled enough?

Learning what qualifies as “good writing” and actually writing are two sides of the same coin. It isn’t a matter of either / or; it’s both / and. After all, one of the best ways to improve as a writer is to—wait for it—write!

Will someone deem my work worthy of publication?

Rejection is hard. I often say we writers must have tender hearts that we can pour out on paper—and hides as tough as alligators’.

If an agent or publisher rejects our work, it may be because it still needs work. And we must be willing to rewrite time and time again to make our writing the best it can be.

If they reject our work because it doesn’t fit neatly into a specific category, we may want to consider the indie publishing route.

Either way, our job as the writer is to do the very best job we possibly can and enlist others to help us do so.

After they’re published, will anyone read my words?

Marketing can seem like a daunting concept. How do we do it effectively? How can we reach our audience, our tribe? How can we do so without coming across as arrogant and self-serving?

This is just one more reality 21st-century writers have to deal with. Learn all you can. Decide what methods you’re comfortable with and give them a try. If they work … great. If not, keep learning and keep marketing.

Trust that as you do your part, your words will reach the people who need to hear them.

As a Christian, will my words honour Him and bless others?

No matter what we write—fiction or nonfiction, blogs or books—this question may weigh on our minds. Like everything else in life, we must dedicate our writing to the Lord and ask Him to guide our steps. If we’re sincere and open to His leading, He will answer our prayer.

What fears do you have as a writer?

Encouragement , , , , Permalink


  1. Jack Popjes says:

    My greatest fear as a writer is that I won’t have time to write everything that I want to, and need to write before I die, or go gaga. I wrote 375,000 words of first draft this past year, an average of 305,000 words the past four years. I’m only through the first 12 years of my autobiography, The Life of Jack: Stories that make God look as good as He is.
    Thanks for the good reminders.

    1. Steph Nickel says:

      I’ve never thought of keeping track of how many words I write in a year. That would be interesting. All the best as you continue to write your autobiography, Jack. Blessings!

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