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I feel like an exhibitionist writing to you publicly like this. I'm performing, dancing a little jig for you, and I've left the windows so that strangers can see. Are you embarassed?
I'm 24 years old and living in Los Angeles. I work a desk job. I want to be a writer, but I'm so afraid of failure that I can't bring myself to write anything. I want so badly to be a genius, but I know I'm not one. This totally paralyzes me. The only way I'll ever get better is if I write something, but if I write anything that isn't a work of genius I'll feel like a failure. I don't know how my brain developed this childish and debilitating feedback system, but it's been stopping me from even *trying* to write something for a few years. I wrote an essay here, the beginning of a short story there, but lacked the confidence to try and get it out into the world. I don't think it would have been all that good, what I had to say at 20 or 22, but I'd be a published writer, and one step closer to a goal that seems so distant now. I'm thinking about giving the whole thing up (seeing as I have investing nothing in it anyway) and learning how to code. But then it strikes me that I might suffer the exact same problem in that field -- feeling like my code is never good enough, and lacking the confidence to get it out in the world.
And really that's what this letter is about. I have gnawing insecurity about my intelligence and creativity. I hope that you have gotten over it, and I hope that making this letter public will help me get over it. In a way, I'll be a published author.
Well, I've gone on for quite a while now, and I expect anyone other than you who is reading this will have lost interest by now. So the performance is over. We're alone now. I love you.