How I Came to Enjoy the Most Uncomfortable Part of the Creative Process

December 2, 2014 7:44 PM

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The weekend before Thanksgiving I did something terrifying but rewarding: I read an excerpt from my book in progress to a room full of people. Live. To me, this is the psychological equivalent of jumping off a bridge in a tutu, and performing air ballet before hitting the water in an arabesque. In other words, public performance is high risk, especially because I was reading to a crowd of peers.

Peers raise the stakes in the best of ways. On one hand I was happy to be surrounded by their presence, grateful to have the chance to gather with people who understand the writing process from the inside out. On the other, I worried my work would not please them. Of the four readers, I had the fewe...

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