The Aspiration Trap: When Is The Right Time To Call Yourself An Author?

Show Notes

Hey and welcome back to Thriving Scribes TV. I'm Brit Poe and today I want to ask you a few questions and see if you're one of the writers out there who are falling into what I like to call the Aspiration Trap.

So today I want to talk about something that I have noticed in the writing community and in the author community as a whole. It's something that is super, super common and I myself fell victim to the Aspiration Trap back years ago and it was something that took a lot of work for me to finally get through and come out the other side with a whole different mindset around this.

The thing that I'm going to talk about is called the Aspiration Trap. And, don't get me wrong though. It is completely fine and you totally should want for things, dream for yourself and have hopes for your future, but it becomes detrimental when you start letting that word define who you are as a person.

So an example of this that I hear a lot inside of the writing community is people will say, "I'm an aspiring writer." An aspiring writer. My guess is that if you're part of the writing community and you're taking part in all of that, that you most likely are a writer already do you, right? Yes? So you're putting words and letters and symbols down on a piece of paper, forming it into ideas. Right? Okay, so you are a writer. There's nothing aspiring about that. You're already doing it. It really is that simple.

Now the next one that I want to talk about is actually one that is not a common idea. So a lot of people out there say, "I'm an aspiring author". There are some conflicting opinions on this- on when it's right or when it's okay for you to call yourself an author and I want to share my own opinions about this. Okay?

"I'm An Aspiring Author."

The way I see it, if you have decided to take your writing seriously and pursue your dreams of publication and success as an author, then you are an author.

Episode 005 : When Is The Right Time To Call Yourself An Author? | Thriving Scribes

Think about it like this. You have a baker who is baking a cake, so before he even had the finished product, before he's even selling this cake of his, he has to do all of the pre-work. He's got to mix all the ingredients. He even has to shop for ingredients that he doesn't have on hand. He's got to put it all together. He has to wait for it to form in the oven. He has to let it cool. He has to ice it. He has to do all of these things before he has a finished product. That doesn't mean that while it's baking and cooking and while it's being decorated that he's not a baker, it just means he hasn't sold his cake yet. The same goes for an author, in my opinion, while you're writing your book, while you're editing your book, while you're getting it ready for publication and before you've even sold a copy of it, you're still an author. You just are not a published author as of yet.

The Aspiration Trap

So why do I believe that the Aspiration Trap is something that is so important to overcome? Guys, it is so easy to feel less than, lacking, and like you're not good enough. And, falling into the comparison game is so many people's default in this community, and I get it. I have been there too. I still struggle with that sometimes these days, but I truly believe that what we think about ourselves inside our own interior dialogue and what we tell the world about ourselves ultimately becomes our reality. It's what sets our boundaries and gives us limits. So if you are holding back from dropping the "aspiring" in your interior dialogue, then you are giving yourself permission to set the bar low.

Because if you're an aspiring author, then you're someone who's hoping to be an author someday. Aspiring doesn't inspire as much action as now does.

Episode 005 : When Is The Right Time To Call Yourself An Author? | Thriving Scribes

So for example, a person who is an aspiring author doesn't have to sit down tonight and write these words, but someone who is an author now does. A person who is going to be an author someday, doesn't have to sit down and figure out that sticky plot twist and chapter 14, but an author who is an author now does. An aspiring author can wait to build their website or take this class to better their craft or start building their author's platform. But an actual author can't. See what I mean? When you call yourself an aspiring author, you're letting yourself off the hook and if you don't take yourself seriously as an author, then not many other people will as well.

So I have some homework for you to do, writer. I want you to break whatever rule you've set for yourself that gets to decide who gets to call themselves an author and who doesn't, because my guess is if you're a writer and you're writing towards the goal of publication, then you're already an author. So I want you to let me know down in the comments, if you've fallen into the Aspiration Trap yourself in your own writing journey. Remember, I'm always rooting for you. Bye.

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Episode 005 : When Is The Right Time To Call Yourself An Author? | Thriving Scribes
  • Thank you for this video! I am unpublished, but have dropped the ‘aspiring’ author about 4 months ago. I’m building a website and I am going to use my name with Author beneath it. I am an author–just not published yet.

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