It's one of the main reasons why many people never actually finish the book they're writing. I mean, if it's finished then other people will read it. And some of those people may not like it! Yes, it feels safe to have an unfinished book.
Well, let me tell you, author, it's not any worse to have a finished book. Quite the opposite. Tying a bow on a book is a liberating experience. Besides, you get the chance to start another, better, book! Who cares if some people don't like what you've written? Does every person in the world think Van Gogh paintings are amazing? Of course not. If a book pleases you, it has served its purpose. As an artist we must create for ourselves, not for others. Creating for others is a slippery slope. Sure, it may earn us some money, but it's not satisfying our inner soul. And come to think of it, if we're creating for others, how different is that to a regular day job? Hmmm. No, an artist creates things for their own pleasure, an expression of something that is important to them and them alone.
If you look at things this way, it actually becomes a little easier to write. There's no pressure to please anyone but yourself. Just get your thoughts down and see where they take you.
Yes, the life of an author can be lonely at times. It can also be scattered with self-doubt. It can seem we are cast alone in a world that doesn't understand us. So, how do we change things? It's very easy. It's actually a two step process:
- Finish the book
- Write another
There you have it. Let's all promise ourselves today we'll do something about our loneliness. Let's just finish our goddamned books!