May 14

The Demons You’ll Face When Writing (and How to Keep Writing)

    Writer’s block is only one of the demons of writing you’ll encounter on your journey to publishing your book.

    While writer’s block is often the most feared demon of writing, there are others that are far more pervasive, far more insidious. We may dress them up in the guise of “writer’s block,” but they’re so much more than that.

    Even here at Paper Raven Books, we fall victim to focusing mostly on the logistical, technical factors of writing, such as:

    All of these aspects are important and necessary to consider when writing and promoting your self-published book, but they’re not the demons of writing.

    The demons of writing come from within you.

    And writing is not just about the technicalities of grammar or point of view or narrative.

    Writing will challenge you mentally, emotionally, and psychologically.

    You are a person, writing a book. It doesn’t matter if it’s fiction or nonfiction. We’re talking about tens of thousands of words that you’re assembling to either help someone else or entertain them for a time.

    That’s challenging by itself, but add your entire history, your needs, your fears, your biases, your hopes, your dreams, your emotions … now it’s challenging AND complicated.

    When we work with writers and authors, we see the same issues come up again and again. These are the universal issues of book writing, or as I like to call them, the demons of writing:

    • Imposter syndrome
    • Fear of critics and/or bad reviews
    • Fear of not being good enough (as a person or as a writer)
    • Fear of marketing/“selling myself”

    Ultimately, the demons of writing boil down to one thing: we’re afraid of what is on the other end of this writing and publishing journey.

    Even if you’ve written and published a book before, every book is different. Every book is a challenge. Every book is a new collection of content, waiting to be born.

    If you’ve watched any of the Facebook Live events that Morgan and I have recorded, you’ll know that we love to use the analogy of your book being a baby.

    Whether you’re a parent or not, you can understand the idea that your book is your baby. You gave it life, through writing. You’ve nurtured it, through editing. You’ve made it presentable and ready to greet the world, through formatting and cover design.

    Sharing your baby with the world is no small step, and even if you’ve published before, it’s a new journey each time.

    You have no idea what the version of you, holding that published book, will be like.

    The fear of the unknown has two very clear symptoms, that often feed off of each other:

    1. Perfectionism
    2. Procrastination

    If you’re experiencing perfectionism and/or procrastination, then the demons of writing have gotten ahold of you.

    It’s very common to get stuck in the editing phase, where perfectionism can take a strong hold on you.

    Procrastination can happen at ANY phase in the writing and publishing process, especially during the writing phase.

    The good news is that there is a ridiculously easy way to shake of ANY AND ALL of the demons of writing.


    Here it is.

    Keep going.

    Keep writing. Keep editing. Keep working on each step of your launch plan.

    You’re probably thinking, “Um, what the heck. That’s it!? That’s not helpful at all!!!”

    Take a deep breath and think about it. Your fears will never be gone. You’ll never know exactly what you’re going to be when you hold your published book in your hands.

    The only way through hell is to keep going.

    Writing your first draft is a sprint, not a marathon.

    The goal is to get words on the page (or screen) so that you have something to edit, refine, and publish.

    The #1 thing that will get in your way is NOT writer’s block, but YOU.

    You are your own worst enemy, but you don’t have to be.

    Fear is natural. Fear is good. Acknowledge the fear and keep going.

    You didn’t set out to write a book and be the same person once the book was published. Becoming an author is not a casual undertaking, and you knew that.

    Becoming an author and sharing what’s inside of you is more important than staying comfortable.

    Don’t stay comfortable. Write, edit, publish.

    The demons of writing can’t drag you down if you’re sprinting steadily toward your goal.


    Bio: Victoria Klein is a two-time published author and the VP of Productions for Paper Raven Books. Formerly PRB’s Book Project Manager, Victoria has helped numerous authors through the self-publishing process from start to finish. Through her monthly posts, she’ll reveal the biggest concerns and mistakes of self-publishing authors, and how to solve them.


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