By Milli ThorntonI’M RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE of an experience of this nature: the voice that will assure you you’re a fraud. I decided to write about it now, while it’s searing through me, as a way to (once again) remind myself what it is next time it’s happening.
About a month ago I started a part-time job as a DJ on a local radio station—after a 33-year hiatus. During my teenage years, up to about age 21, I was a DJ on our high school radio station. A fun experience but that was a long time ago, and technology has changed greatly since then.
After almost a month on-air in my new position, I was finally starting to feel like I was hitting my stride (at least, for a newbie) when a couple of confidence-shattering things happened towards the end of last week. I spent the first part of the weekend trying to deal with my devastated emotions. The second half of the weekend was a lot of fun, I had no time to brood, and I felt somewhat healed. I thought I would be OK once I got back in the studio on Monday morning.
Wrong. I didn’t realize that the voice who will assure you you’re a fraud had taken hold.
As I did my voice breaks, the feeling worsened. I became 100% convinced I was a fraud and as soon as I was discovered, I would be flushed out and eliminated. An extremely uncomfortable and demoralizing feeling that skews things out of perspective.
I had to finish my work so I had no choice but to keep going. I finished my shift and went home to face the music. Every day when I get home from the studio I listen to myself on the radio to see how I can improve. Not an easy thing to do, but you get used to it. Today I could barely stand the thought of hearing myself. I cringed, waiting for my first voice break, right after Sting got finished singing “Wrapped Around Your Finger.”
Then something weird happened. There was no hideous monster doing my voice breaks. I sounded fine. I’m not world-class, maybe not even town-class yet, but I sounded fine. I continued to listen and, as the voice breaks went on, I realized I’d been duped. By that voice.
I’m still feeling a bit shaky and tomorrow might not be much easier than today was. But it sure helps to know it’s not me. It’s a lie. That voice is the only fraudster in this story.
Have you ever had this voice attack you while you were writing?
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MILLI THORNTON (aka Milliver) is the author of Fear of Writing. She is owner of the Fear of Writing Online Course and Unleash Your Writing!, where her mission is to put the fun back into writing. Milli blogs at Milliver’s Travels and Screenwriting in the Boonies and coaches at Writer’s Muse Coaching Service.