I am about to shoot myself in the foot and I am not 100% sure I care.
Every writer needs a “tribe.”
Gone are the days when people can write books, send out manuscripts and pray some editor loves it enough to publish it.
These days people need a tribe, followers, a community of people who believe in them.
Their followers need to care about them enough, that they will support them and follow their journey.
This is how America got stuck with Justin Bieber.
This kid puts his music up on YouTube and kids flocked to it.
Justin Bieber built a tribe!
These kids will follow him anywhere and they did!
They followed him all the way to the bank!
So why am I bringing this up?
Because I am taking an online course called “TribeWriters” and I am 100% certain I am going to suck at this.
You can call it a writing course. You can call it a marketing course. You can even call it a journey to finding myself, for me it is walking into the lions den and I am feeling sick.
I think I have just come face to face with one of my biggest fears and I can either run like a scared little girl, or face this baby head on and see if I come out the other end unscathed.
Be confident they say.
Write what you know.
Find your voice.
Oh I am!
Let me first say that this course is amazing.
Jeff Goins and his crew have done a fantastic job.
It’s a well thought out course and I am certain many people are going to benefit from it and go on to do great things.
But this is sooo far out of my comfort zone that I am literally, physically sick!
Here’s why. The little one in front is me. Notice the head down, no eye contact.
Now, look at the next photo.
This shy child became a clown and hid behind the makeup.
I built a whole world around Lyric T. Clown.
All she wanted was for Jesus to love her, all of her, even her imperfections.
She is even afraid of other clowns!
I was 15 when I started clowning. The goal was to support myself and bring joy but I just couldn’t ask people to pay.
Joy and happiness should be free, just like the air we breathe!
Everyone should be allowed to have it, not just a child who happens to have a rich Mommy or Daddy but ALL kids!
Then I realized, I wasn’t in this to make money, I was in this to spread love, to teach others that the shy kids have something to offer too and to share how Jesus unconditionally loves the imperfections in all of us.
So I joined a clown alley and volunteered my time working with differently-abled children and adults. It was the most rewarding job ever!
I was a terrible technical clown. My hands shook, so I couldn’t face paint. Juggling was a joke and my balloon animals were so awful, I used to tell kids they were the balloon animals no one else wanted, and ask them if they would please love them for me.
I was so awful, I created a whole skit around my imperfections and showed the audience that if Jesus can love us this way, why can’t we?
But the whole time I clowned, I was hiding. I was a character.
I knew who Lyric was. I knew who I wanted her to be and when I gave her life, in some ways I was preparing for the life I wanted.
I used to say that Lyric T. Clown was everything I wanted to be and more.
She was bold, she expressed herself, but most of all, she cared, she had heart and she would rather sit on the floor for hours trying to befriend a shy child or spend time with a lonely senior citizen who had no one, than do anything else. She just loved unconditionally. No hidden agenda, no money paid, nothing but pure love.
Life is funny isn’t it?
Back then, I thought my only different-ability would be how scared I was of people.
Yet, after I gave myself permission to create a character without limitations, without fears, a character that would mirror everything I wanted to be in real life, I was able to walk through the fear, learn to love and truly find a part of myself that was missing.
In ways its a lot like cancer.
I had no idea, that years later, Cancer would take so much from me but here I am.
Starting over, recreating me so to speak, and who would have thought that the personality traits I gave a little clown, would come back to enrich my life and help me grow into the person I would be proud to know.
My friends reading this are about to tell me I am full of it.
They don’t see the shy girl anymore.
I’m not so sure they ever did. I hid it well, but I think once a shy girl, always a shy girl.
We have to constantly push ourselves out the door and into the real world, because we know life is for the living and our blessings are not to be hidden.
HAHA you thought I went on a clown tangent didn’t you?
You thought I forgot about tribe writers and my fears.
I just beat around the bush a bit 🙂
My point is I am not that girl!
I am not the girl who can “market” or “promote” myself.
Every time I share my blog on my Facebook page I feel like I am imposing on my friends valuable time.
It’s true, I am not that shy girl anymore, BUT that is still a big part of me, and if we are meant to fully embrace who we are, and love ourselves for our talents, quirks, and even our little idiosyncrasies, then shouldn’t we embrace the qualities that make us, US, instead of trying to change them?
Yes, I want to be a writer.
Yes, I want to write books and blogs and magazine articles.
Yes, I want people to read them BUT I would be perfectly happy being that prolific writer, who no one knows anything about, then one day she dies and everyone says:
“WOW she was good!”
But that is not how the world works today.
We have to change & grow with the times and I don’t like it one bit!
I “HATE” yes I said “HATE” the word “Marketing.”
I think we are defined in ways by our past and all those multi-level marketing scams have ruined me.
I am not a prospect. I am not someone who you can schmooze or kiss up to get what you want. I see through those kind of people and I refuse to ever be one of them.
I don’t want a “tribe” of followers who think if they follow me, I will follow them and we can help each other get where we want to go. I want people in my life who care about what I say, who believe in my message, who want to see me succeed and who want to go on this journey with me because I bring some value to their lives.
I won’t be that person either. I refuse to follow someone because of what they can do for me.
I have all I need with Jesus, anything else is icing on the vegan cupcake.
I am going to finish this “TribeWriters” course because I believe Jeff Goins has a good heart. I believe he really just wants to help people succeed and one of his books changed my life but I am going to kick and scream my way through it.
Lyric made her audience feel important because she genuinely loved them.
That is how I run my life, and that is how I am going to run my career, and if the Lord sees fit to bless me with readers then I will be forever grateful and honored.
It’s amazing what you can learn from a little clown with a big heart.
Have a blessed day!