An Anxious Experience

Cara in a black shirt that says Anxious Writers Club in White lettering

I have experience.

But I also have anxiety and with it a fear of failing myself and others.

Experience says I can do this thing because I’ve been doing it for a long time.

Anxiety says… you may think you’re capable, but boy are you wrong.

Eroticon is rapidly approaching and I’ve been in this weird nervous place where I’m unsure. Lots of thoughts running through my head related to my sessions. Being clear, having a good discussion, making it nuanced enough without going overboard. I’m anxious and it shows.

I’m nervous about speaking.

The funny thing is, I’m not unfamiliar with public speaking. My vanilla life saw me teaching full time not so long ago. That’s a lot of presentation preparation, a lot of speaking in front of people, a fuckton of getting and keeping people engaged. I’m not a pro, but it isn’t like this will be a new experience for me.

And yet…

Last year I read out one of stories during the readings. I made it through, but shook pretty hard after.

The idea that I won’t achieve what I’m supposed to has had me unsettled all week. It’s nerves, I know I am JUST NERVOUS. But it’s had the unfortunate side effect of making me feel inadequate in other ways.

I’m sure I’m not the only person speaking this weekend who is suffering the nerves so I guess this is for all of us when I say…

This is a group of our peers. People who know us and support us. No one is going to treat you like you’re incompetent if you stumble through your introduction. It’ll all be fine and you’ll say all the things you’ve been practicing.

Eroticon will be a success. Your session will be a success.

And when it’s all done? You can have a beer (or adult bev of your choosing) for rocking it.

Check out the schedule to figure out what things you’re planning on attending. Hard choices! Here are the ones I’m doing.

Also, if you’re interested, stop by the bookstall and pick up an Anxious Writers Club T-shirt. £10.

Cara in a black shirt that says Anxious Writers Club in White lettering


  1. missy

    You will be amazing. I can’t wait to see you again and I am looking forward to hearing your sessions. Deep breaths – you’ve got this ❤️

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