I have been writing for as long as I can remember. At age 10 I kept a diary. In my pre-teen and teenage years, I wrote poems and short stories. Some of the poems were even published in my high school’s literary journals, but only because it was mandated as part of my English grade.
When I became an adult, I continued with the short stories. Some of them still remain on disks, hidden away in the back of a desk drawer. Other unseen works are scribbled out in felt tip pen in various notebooks and binders, stuffed in a box in the back of my closet. Until I discovered Wattpad last year, I never allowed another soul to read what I had written. The reason I finally succumbed to sharing my work with the world?
So now you know. CC Clark is not my real name. Sorry for the ruse, folks. It’s nothing personal. I don’t mind if someone doesn’t appreciate what I write. I learned a long time ago, I am not everyone’s cup of tea. And to be honest, I don’t write for others. I write to quench the burning need to get these words and sentences and pages and stories out of my head and into print. I don’t feel normal if I am not creating. I find myself falling into a rut if I don’t take some time during the week to come up with a character, develop and breathe life into it.
I write for me. And only me. And when someone takes the time to drop me a line to say “Hey! I really dig your story!” that’s just icing on the cake. And a little bit like crack. LOL. I can’t get enough of that. But back to me being all private and under the radar…
The reason for the use of the pen name isn’t because I am afraid someone will call me out by my real name and tell me I’m a shitty writer. Hell, I can do that myself. The reason I publish my works anonymously is so the people who know me personally – in particular my close friends and relatives – aren’t privy to my works. It would cripple me if I knew someone close to me read my stories. A bunch of strangers? No big deal. But tell me my mom or my best friend or my co-workers are reading my work and I go into the fetal position. Being discovered like that is way more intimacy than I can deal with.
In some ways, it’s sad because my family and friends would be thrilled to know that I am writing. I know in my heart that they would be extremely supportive of my work, whether they enjoyed it or not. And if they didn’t approve of what I had written, they would never say so. Really there is no good reason for me to keep this all a secret. I have a great support group who would stand by me. And if I ever get this novel finished and release it on Amazon as planned, I know they would be proud of me, whether I sold 100,000 copies, or just one.
I don’t know if I will ever overcome this fear of sharing that part of my life with those I love. So anonymous I will remain.
For now, anyway.