“I’m a secretive bastard. I would never let anybody watch me painting… it would be like somebody watching you have sex – painting is that personal to me.” ~Andrew Wyeth
My husband has a bad habit of looking over my shoulder and reading what I write or type as I am doing it.
What’s worse? He won’t only read it but he would read it out loud.
“What are you doing?” I would ask covering my paper or closing my laptop.
“Reading.” He would answer.
I would, for some odd reason, feel so violated and exposed. I would go into my bedroom, lock the door and stay there until I finished. I hid away like a hermit. My husband didn’t understand why I would react that way. He assumed I was just being weird or overreacting.
When I first saw the quote above I was happy that I was not alone. I am very secretive about my work. I do not feel comfortable with others reading what I have written until I feel that it is read to be read. I like for my best work to be viewed and not the other drafts where I am still working or changing things up.
Writing is personal. Every writer puts a piece of themselves in everything they write. It makes it much more difficult sometimes to expose something so personal to others. I used to write and never show anyone for years. It took courage for me to share that part of me with the world.
That all happened when I published my first novel.
I am someone who always thinks something I have written can always be improved upon so when it came time to publish my first novel I fretted over the details all the way until it was sent to the printers to be printed and bound. I wrote a new chapter a week before it was available for purchase.
You must imagine then how vulnerable and naked I felt when people began to read it and leave reviews on Amazon. I’m still waiting for my fingernails to grow back.
I believe that my secrecy is hinged on my opinion of my own writing. I still on occasion fear that people will think I write poorly or that I am not as good of a writer as I thought. It is insecurities that plague other writers and artist, I believe.
So, maybe my husband was right. Maybe I am weird, overreacting or just very eccentric about my writing but like any other artist my writing is personal and only allowed to be viewed when I share it.