The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG) is a place to share and encourage, where writers can express their doubts and concerns without appearing foolish or weak. It's a great place to mingle with like minded people each month during IWSG day.
Every month there's an optional question which may prompt folks to share advice, insights, a personal experience or story. Some folks answer the question in their IWSG blog post or let it inspire them if they're struggling with what to say.
This month's question is:
"Have you ever surprised yourself with your writing? For example, trying a new genre you didn't think you'd be comfortable in?"
Check out how people have answered this month's question, as well as the other insecurities and writing topics they may have shared by visiting the IWSG sign-up list here. If you want to see how I answered the question, have a look below.
"Jeez, lady, get a move on already," growled Simon the Time Traveling Cat. He swished his gray tail back and forth angrily. "We don't have all day."
"Simon, just hold your horses for a minute," I snapped. "I've got so much to do to get our sailboat ready for Hurricane Irma. She's headed our way in just a few days."
Simon jumped onto my lap and glared at me with those weird eyes of his, the ones that look like miniature clock faces.
"Enough hurricane talk. It's all you've been going on about lately. Irma this, Irma that." He reached up and swatted my nose with his paw, claws fully extended. "You even forgot to give me a saucer of milk this morning because you were busy looking at the weather forecasts."
"Ouch!" I screamed. "Why'd you go and do that?"
"Because you need to focus. You need to answer month's IWSG question, instead of worrying about that stupid Irma," Simon said. "Now, look into my eyes and count to ten. We're going to travel through time to another universe."
I felt myself drift off as he blinked his eyes slowly ten times.
"Wake up, lady. We're here."
"Here, where's here?" It felt like I had woken up from a deep sleep. I looked around and pointed at a woman sitting at a desk typing on a computer, completely unaware of us. "Wait a minute, that woman looks just like me." Her resemblance to me was uncanny, even down to the birthmark on her arm.
As I was freaking out a little about finding out that I have an identical twin that my mother completely forgot to tell me about, I looked out the window. That's when I noticed that there were two suns in the sky, instead of the normal single, solitary sun that I'm used to.
"Um, Simon. What's going on here? Why are there two suns?" I asked. There might have been a touch of hysteria in my voice. Just a touch, mind you. Not a complete nervous breakdown or anything. "And why does she seem completely oblivious to us? Are we dead? Are we ghosts or something?"
"Give me a break, lady. Not every planet just has one sun." Simon paused for a moment to wash space dust off of his tail with his pink tongue. "This isn't your universe, dummy. It's a parallel universe. And that isn't you exactly. It's a parallel you."
He paused again to clean behind his ears with his paws. "And she can't see us because of some laws of physics or something. Too complicated to explain. Plus I could care less. If it doesn't involve cat treats and belly rubs, I'm not interested."
"What's she typing, anyway?" I asked as I peered over her shoulder to look at her computer.
"Duh. The answer to this month's IWSG question."
I stared at Simon blankly.
"What? You didn't think they'd have IWSG in parallel universes? Jeez, lady, you're stupider than you look. And that isn't saying much." Simon nudged me with his nose. "Go on, read what she's typing. Then you can put that down as your answer and get back to that stupid Irma stuff. Plus, get me a saucer of milk."
Fair enough. I was short of time given all the hurricane prep we needed to do. It couldn't really hurt to copy down her answer, could it? After all, she's me. Or am I her? Who knows. In any event, here's the answer:
"Writing a fantasy short story for the IWSG anthology last year was a real surprise. Although, I love reading sci-fi and fantasy, the thought of writing something in that genre seemed really daunting. I was focused on writing a cozy mystery, which seems easier given that the genre has a certain formula and rules. But when it comes to sci-fi and fantasy, the rules seem less clear. But I went for it and made up my own rules. Who knows, maybe in a parallel universe somewhere, there's a parallel me who just writes sci-fi and fantasy and surprised herself by writing a cozy mystery for an anthology contest."
If you had a chance to travel to another planet, would you go? Do you think there's life on other planets? What writing or other insecurities have you been working through? Are you busy prepping for Hurricane Irma?
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