Imposter Syndrome

I have a secret. I'm not sure I'm a writer. Don't get me wrong. I self-published my first book in September 2019. I write for a magazine. Discussing writing comes naturally—the process, the ups and downs, the craft. I've had several book signings and visited schools to talk about reading and writing. I'm a member of a few writing and critique groups, including Coffee House Tours. I have a website, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook platforms where I share my writer life. I even have a few podcasts under my belt. But who am I to tell you—published, qualified, talented writers—how to do something? Am I qualified in an educational way to discuss writing with you? I have a B.S. in Communication with an emphasis in Advertising and a minor in Psychology. I'm only three credits shy of having an English minor. Can I use my work history to tout that I'm an expert in the field? My titles have included assistant newsletter editor, communications and marketing specialist, event manager, and assistant magazine editor. Three authors have trusted me with editing their books. Do I possess some secret recipe on how to publish and promote books? After a few attempts, I successfully uploaded both the printed and digital versions of my book to KDP and Ingram Spark. To date, I have not made the NYT Best Seller list, but my sales have surpassed my expectations. So why, after living a life creating with the written word, do I still feel like an imposter?  There comes the point in time no matter what your career path, you question whether you're part of the "fake it 'til you make it" crowd. It's true; there is such a thing as "imposter syndrome." It's a fairly common problem, especially among creatives. I'm not as deeply afflicted as some folks, but none the less, I sometimes feel like I'm not in any position to tell people how to write a book, or how to edit a story, or how to walk the tightrope of self-publishing. Maybe I'm the only one in this remarkable group of talents that's ever felt this way. But if I'm not, now you know that if you're questioning yourself, you can take comfort that you're not alone. The most incredible feeling during my writing journey thus far was when I officially announced that my book was available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It was a powerful, intoxicating feeling of accomplishment. What followed was a burst of self-confidence I'd never experienced before. It was like I peeled away the old me and stepped out into a bright light of assuredness. I could—and DID—call myself a published author, a writer, and it felt good.  My first book signing was a spectacular event in my hometown in Idaho. People I hadn't seen since I was a kid sparkled with excitement when I signed their copy of my book. The interactions with readers—dare I say fans—was overwhelming and humbling. From September until January, I was walking at least a foot taller in my new-found author shoes. But now, that honeymoon period is fading. COVID-19 shut down all the fun I'd planned. Several book signings, school visits, and a reading at a book store were all canceled. The feeling of elation started to ebb, even though I knew I had to continue championing my book. It suddenly seemed so hard. That old feeling of self-doubt and fear began to tickle my psyche.  Then it hit me. Isn't feeling an imposter part of the entire process? Feelings of inadequacy happen to every writer, every illustrator, every creative at some point along their journey. Going through the whole undertaking can shake even the strongest foundation of confidence. And why define me using only the negative? What about the confidence while I wrote the book? What about the feelings of exhilaration nabbing that one perfect word rolling around in my head for an hour? How about the intoxication of getting my ISBN, forever to be noted in the annals of time? And the burst of courage to get the entire package made into a book?  The perseverance to see something so dear to my heart through to the very end and the courage to share it is my glaring example that I can officially call myself a writer, even IF I have periods of fear and self-doubt. All of the tiny vignettes—good, bad, or otherwise—must play out to get to the beautiful end of birthing a book. Every fear, every confidence, and the mishmash in between is what it is to be a writer.  Maybe I don't need to tell you all of this. Maybe you've all figured it out for yourselves. But if you haven't, perhaps the one thing I can share with you is the inspiration that you're never alone in your writing journey, and the various emotions that come with being a creative are normal. Sometimes, that feeling of being an undercover imposter lurking around with actual writers may very well crop up. But remember one thing. You’re here. And here, we’re ALL writers.


Temple Kinyon is the daughter of Idaho wheat farmers and spent her first 33 years living life in “small-town America.”

After residing in Las Vegas for over 16 years, she’s decided you can take the girl out of Idaho, but not the Idaho out of the girl. This little fact compels her to seek adventure away from Vegas’s glitz, giving closeness to her rural roots when veering off the beaten path.

When she’s not exploring the unique offerings of Southern Nevada, she writes. Her contributions appear in Home & Harvest Magazine, BLVDS LV Magazine, Idaho Grain Magazine, and Google's travel site Temple shares her life with her husband and ferociously funny bulldog.


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