After I put up Tuesday's post about my talk, I started thinking about it and wondering if maybe I should look at that video after all. In the last two days, two possibilities have arisen that would give the book a LOT more exposure and one of those possibilities would give me—as in my physical person—more exposure as well. (No, not naked, ya filthy freaks.) The possibility of that second one scared the living crap out of me, but I knew I'd never say no to it. I have to get used to being more public, and there's no way around it if I want to also sell the things I write.
So after everyone went to bed last night, I dug out the video and watched it.
And it was OK.
More than OK, it was a hell of a lot better than I had remembered. People laughed quite a bit more than I had realized. I didn't stutter or stumble on my words as much as I remembered. My neck did do that awful spotty flushing thing, and it's pretty clear now what I mean when I say I am "oddly shaped." But a month later, with a little perspective, it wasn't nearly as bad as I had made it out in my own head to be.
These last couple months have not been easy, and the process of grieving and trying to help my youngest daughter through her own grief took its toll. It has been very easy for me to dismiss myself and do the easy thing of thinking I am not worthy of anyone's attention. I actually started thinking that the next time I write a book, I will just sell it through Amazon under a pseudonym and I'll never have to deal with publicity and marketing and people asking me to come speak at their quilt shops and guild meetings.
In the last few days I have started to see light peeking through all that gloom. I started to get excited about writing again. I started to remember that every great thing I have ever done, I was completely terrified of doing at first. And those things that I kept doing, I got better—even good—at.
Part of my talk was about going on even when you feel like a big failure. After my talk, I felt like I had proven I wasn't cut out for being a "public" person, but when I decided to prove it to myself by looking at the evidence, I realized I was wrong. Sure, I need practice. But I can do this again. Probably. Maybe after today, it won't even be an issue!
So, here it is. Feedback welcome. Kind feedback, I should say. I know there's a long tradition on YouTube of leaving comments that suggest the subject of the video is ugly and should die, but let's try to refrain from that, shall we?
I had to split the video into two parts because YouTube will not accept videos longer than 15 min, and the whole thing was 20. So, if you can spare 20 minutes, I recommend watching the whole thing so you can get to the reading at the end, which is the best part.