I ended my last post with (among other things):
I want to contribute to a world in which people feel less alone.
It took me quite a few days to realize the irony of my statement. The thing is: I have felt alone myself way too many times in these last years. I want to make clear that I am only talking about my professional life. I’m very blessed to be in a happy and rewarding marriage.
But I’m an independent creator and I create alone. Muriel helps me by giving feedback and helps me to edit existing texts. Going from ‘scratch’ to ‘draft’ is something I always do alone, though. This is the case for my stories and all other things that are part of The Lesbian Romantic, like the community.
It wasn’t just that I spent a lot of time by myself at home. As an introvert, I am very comfortable with being alone. I most often started to feel alone, as in lonely, whenever I tried to connect with others in my field(s) to get inspired about my next steps.
I soon discovered that I didn’t feel comfortable within the romance writers community. Nor did I feel like I belonged in the podcasting community. I often feel quite out of place in the broader LGBTQ+ community, to be honest. I definitely didn’t feel at home in the marketing world.
And so I kept going about it alone. That was fine most of the time. I have learned that there is a lot of freedom in working by yourself. In the past, I was too reliant on others and my projects failed because of it. I wasn’t going to let that happen again.
A few years in, though, I started to discover an unintended consequence. There is only so much you can when you stay inside your own head. It is much harder to visualize new things when you’re alone. I had bumped into the limits of my freedom.
I slowly acknowledged that I needed to collaborate with people again if I wanted to keep growing. ‘Collaboration’ is the key word here. There are plenty of people who will happily suggest ideas. The thing is: ideas and opinions are easily given when you know you won’t have to execute them.
Whenever I tried to find people I could collaborate with, though, that awful sense of loneliness crept up on me again. I couldn’t find a professional ‘tribe’ I wanted to belong to. Hell, I had serious issues with most of the ‘tribes’ I looked into. I suddenly felt stuck alone, rather than just alone.
I’m happy to share that even this has changed in the last few weeks. 2020 sure had been a ride so far! Remember when I said that I was busting open the doors to my heart? I totally did that. And within days, it all felt so liberating, that I busted open some more doors.
Long story short: I’m taking the first steps to start collaborating with a friend. I could never have predicted that we would one day be discussing working together! I recognized some of my own struggles in her a few weeks ago, though, and I just couldn’t let it go. So, I decided to ask:
“Hey, wanna do this together?”
We’re working on a shared vision now. I’m going to help her with some of her existing projects. Just today, I asked her to help me. I want her help to come up with an ambitious vision for this podcast and community. It’s all very scary and all very exciting.
My mind is blown wide open. And you know what? I already feel less lonely too.
Note: It is important to me to separately acknowledge all the fellow romantics who have supported and encouraged me in my creative adventures in these last years.
You have given me fantastic ideas and have guided me in the right direction too many times to count. You are my tribe.
💜 Dear fellow romantic,
I'm on a mission to make people smile. That's why I share my stories freely: so everyone has access to them.
As a crowdfunded and queer creator, I humbly ask for your support to help me keep going in 2021. Every dollar makes a huge difference.