Simple Definition of expertise
: special skill or knowledge : the skill or knowledge an expert has
Simple Definition of writer
: someone whose work is to write books, poems, stories, etc.
: someone who has written something
There is a warmth and joy that accompanies a feeling of belonging, being part of a group of like-minded individuals who share a common passion or goal; a feeling of “specialness,” that elevates self-confidence. When I was invited to join Mysteristas, I was immeasurably excited. I’d been interacting with the group for a while on Twitter, and found the exchanges to be thoughtful and fun. Being part of such a lively group of people with a shared passion for mysteries was incredible. To become part of those who were moderating, leading, and initiating conversations? Wow. I floated for days.
However, not long after I accepted the invitation, the glow began to wear off and the worry bullies arrived. I fell into the pit of self-doubt: I’m not worthy, they’re going to regret this, I’ll never be able to measure up, etc. What could I, little ole me, possibly contribute to this amazing group of women? Oy.
I’m still thrilled beyond measure to be a part of this group, and I love how I’m constantly learning from the other Mysteristas and our lovely fans. Our discussions challenge me to think in new ways, consider new perspectives, and move outside my comfort zone. I love it! But, I also still battle the myth that only writers, published successful writers, have meaningful things to say about writing. I know it’s not true, really; there’s no pre-requisite level of expertise required to have an opinion!
And yet, there are days where I wallow over drafting a post that I hope readers and writers will find interesting, meaningful, entertaining, and worthy of their time (no pressure at all), and have to beat back the worry bullies who keep reminding me that not only have I not published a novel yet, I haven’t even finished writing one! Not one completed novel, written by me, sits in the drawer or under the bed or in a closet somewhere gathering dust.
And yet, I write. I write often (1554 words yesterday morning, while I chilled at the bookstore!). I read as much as time allows (or as much as I can while forgoing sleep), and I have a lot to say about writing that I read, and writing that I produce. Because at the end of the day, I know what I enjoy reading, what I’m inspired to write, and those things alone mean I have something to say. As I reviewed the definitions at the beginning of the post, I fell in love with the number two definition of writer: someone who has written something. Yes! That’s me. I’m a writer. But, even if I wasn’t, I’d still have something to say about writing, and that’s okay, too.