Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG)

It is February 3rd, 2016 with my first post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, hosted by Alex Cavanaugh.  My friend, Patricia Anne Pierce-Garcia Schaack invited me to join.  I have a feeling I’m going to learn how to adjust my backbone here.


“It isn’t like a big thing of, you know, you gotta take a thunderbolt and throw it at Zeus, except every once in a while, but that comes on its own.  Zeusie and thunderbolts come on their own; you can’t call them up.  They’re products of circumstance, and time, and history, and yourself, and your metabolism, and your love affairs, and your money, and your lack of money, and your food, and your drugs, and your shoes, and your Brooks Brothers, and your Empire State Building, and the winter snow, and your mother’s living death, or something.  So you can’t combine all those things on your own.  You have to wait for nature to throw up a great wave.”    Allen Ginsberg

“Inspiration cannot be willed, although it can be wooed.”  Anthony Storr


My friends encouraged me to join the Insecure Writer’s Support Group.  I find it hard to believe that anyone out there could be more insecure than I am about my writing.  I suppose I’ll find out.

Frankly, I never thought of myself as a writer.  I love to read, but write… nahhhhh.  However, I DO love creativity.  I used to sew, knit, do cross-stitch, embroider, make hook rugs, paper flowers, and create!  I love music so I danced and did synchronized swimming. But life keeps flicking its’ tail in my face, so it is time to acknowledge my experiences… good and bad so I can cleanse my system.  I love learning new subjects, so here is my opportunity.  One problem… I’m a devout perfectionist!  This is a trait I learned from my critical and judgmental family… so now I have to deal with these habits too.

Right now I feel like I have fallen into a bleak, black hole.  My husband had a serious surgery and I’m playing Nurse Wratchett.  I’m stressed and angry.  I didn’t expect old age to be like this… ok, NOW you tell me!  I thought I wanted to write about interesting, informative, and fun subjects, except how do you do that when you are SO angry that it looks like a stream of burning coal wafting from my ears?

However, in talking to friends I’m learning that I’m not the only one to feel angry and scared when you have a seriously sick spouse on your hands.  The feelings go along with age and illness.  PHEW!!  One starts thinking about the dreams and hopes we carried in our hearts, but now realize these visions will never come to fruition.  This is part of the anger I feel with my husband’s serious illness.  Realizing and identifying the frustration that is rushing through my brain, like a flash flood, helps to start dry up the waters as the sun starts to peak out from behind the bleak clouds.  Then I feel the release of emotion from my system.

So now I have a group of friends who have pulled my brain out of the grave so that I can go laugh and enjoy life.  Now, if only the rain outside my house would stop!

Now, this is one of my many excuses for not working on my blog.  I would love to write a book about my brother, but he didn’t write enough details about his life, and his life was quite different from my boring life.  Everyone suggests I use my imagination… what imagination?  Do you see a pattern here… me too.  Now you see why I joined the Insecure Writers’ Support Group.  Boy, am I looking for your support too!


About Gwynn Rogers

After 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the fields of real estate, high tech, and corporate travel, Gwynn has moved on to the career of “Grandma.” When not teaching her granddaughters an extensive vocabulary of “alley-oop-boop, ups-a-daisy, cowabunga or bummer”, Gwynn can be found hunting for mentors for the Kitsap Youth Mentoring Consortium, or chasing her fantasies on her treadmill. Gwynn currently freelances for magazines.
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32 Responses to Insecure Writers Support Group (IWSG)

  1. Tina Peterson says:

    This is one of your best, Gwynn! Good for you!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Thanks Tina! There is so much going on in my life, many reasons for my anger. So I can choose to stay in the hole OR work to climb out to see the sunlight… I’m climbing! Thanks for commenting. I appreciate your support.

  2. Susan Scott says:

    Even though I’m not part of the IWSG Gwynn, I wouldn’t have missed this post for the world. You’ve expressed so much in few words and, as always, with your inimitable sense of humour. Your post shows that you have NOT lost your creativity … Thank you and my thoughts are with you and caring for your husband’s illness, while caring for yourself. I love your selection of quotes.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Good morning, Susan! Thanks for supporting me with your kind and wise words. At this point, caring for myself is critical as no one else will do the job! We took John to a new doctor so she will run some tests and we’ll do some experimenting with changing John’s meds. Hopefully, this will stop his falls. At this point I have to put myself in God’s hands as I sure will need his support through all this! Ok, I will need a few people down here to kick me in the tail-end so I walk in the right direction! Thanks for your friendship!

  3. pat garcia says:

    Welcome to the group. You’ll find great writers here and all of us have our problems to deal with.

    One thing that you mentioned I want to refute. There is no such thing as a vision becoming fruitless unless you let it. Life doesn’t begin with sixteen and it doesn’t stop with sixty or seventy. If it happens, then we have allowed it to happen.

    Another thought: Concerning writing the book about your brother, have you ever thought about using a Creative Non-Fiction style? That gives you more leeway in comparison to a memoir.

    Great job, My dear. I am very happy you have made the first step out of your dark stage.


    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Pat, Thanks for your support and for convincing me to join this group. I have a feeling the support will help me grow. The idea of actually blooming is enlightening; and yes, I know I have to make the first step. Thanks for being out there pushing!

      The funny part about writing about my brother is that my “creativity” couldn’t touch his real life with a ten foot pole. My brother was quite an interesting and quirky character. I SO wish his journals had included all that he had experienced instead of writing his educational side.

      Thanks again, Pat, for your support and advice.

  4. My husband had the audacity to get seriously ill while I was taking care of our 18 month old and pregnant with number 2! I was kind of angry with that situation at certain moments, but in my case, I was very fortunate that he recovered.

    In these situations, people might expect the caregiver to react with fear, generosity, and who knows all, but anger might be a surprise. Maybe you could write about that.

    Welcome to the ISWG from one of this month’s co-hosts!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Tamara, Boy, my heart goes out to you in dealing with a “little” one, being pregnant, AND dealing with a sick husband. I think fear is partly what fuels my anger, but my husband is an EXTREME TYPE A+++ personality and he does NOT know how to listen, nor does he truly understand how to take care of himself. Plus, we have been married a long time and our relationship is weird to put it politely, so I’m hurt. I’m convinced writing this would depress people beyond words, where I really want to bring humor to people’s lives. Of course maybe if I’m angry enough people will see the humor in the situation.

      But Thank you for Co-hosting the ISWG this month. I look forward to interacting with the group and growing! Gwynn

  5. Jen Chandler says:

    Hi Gwynn! Trust me, you aren’t the only Insecure writer our there. In fact, I’d wager we’re all insecure and we all feel like the most insecure writer on the planet at least most of the time :). Like you, I’ve tried all sorts of creative outlets: I sew, embroider, sing, make books and paper…the list goes on and on BUT the one art that has never left me, that has never become “boring” or “old” is writing. Writing is a freedom for me, even if it’s just keeping a list of things I want to write about. Oh, and that anger you feel? It’s a great asset. USE IT. Let it fuel your writing. Write with all the gusto and emotion that you feel at the moment. You can edit later. Write from where you ARE not where you want to be. That’s where the magic happens. Nice to “meet” you! ~ Jen

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Jen! Thanks for your words of wisdom. I LOVE creativity but I look at the various writers who write meaningful things and then I say “I’m not like that.” In the same breathe though, I don’t really want to write from the head, but from my heart. I’m convinced a good writer writes from both their head and heart. Over the years I have taken a wide variety of writing courses and I keep hearing “Gwynn has potential.” Yet there are others who don’t like my writing style and say as much. So WHO do I listen to… the Nay sayers instead of the people who encourage me.

      My brother was an intellectual and he could let his brain flow in a variety of directions. I guess I need to relax and learn to go with the flow. Thanks for your comment about using my anger. I truly appreciate your comments. And it is lovely to “meet” you too! Gwynn

  6. Nancy Reece says:

    Everyone has insecurities, it’s how they define us that is important. You feel angry? Great, use that to build upon. Remember, not every word has to be a jewel, they just have to be down on paper. As for your brother, take what you know about him and fill in the gaps. The important part to realize is, you aren’t alone. We are all struggling together.

    Welcome to the group!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Nancy, Thanks for your thoughts and comments. I’m a grade A procrastinator so capturing those run-away words is sometimes a chore. I MUCH prefer that when I offer the run-aways some goodies that they willingly come to me. I especially appreciate knowing I’m not alone. I’m curious how others overcome their insecurities. Thanks for your support!

  7. Patty says:

    Sounds like some therapeutic purging. Enjoy your ISWG!

  8. Oh, Gwynn, what a great post. I think of you often, and am sending all good thoughts. So happy you’ve joined the IWSG. I used to contribute posts every month, but wasn’t able to keep up. It really is a very supportive place. You’re a great writer!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Silvia, you are such a kind and wonderful person. Thanks for your delightful comment. I think the IWSG will force me to write as does the A-Z Challenge. I did sign up, by the way. I need to develop a backbone and I’m hoping that the IWSG will help fortify me. I also should probably take a fiction writing course, to open up my brain. But saying that I usually have been more interested in writing short stories. I guess we’ll see what happens! Thanks again for being such a supportive friend!

  9. Welcome to the IWSG!

    Those feelings are made to be written down! Journal them. Or channel them into something creative. It won’t fix everything, but it will help.

    Take care!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Thanks Madeline! I have been journaling, but it took talking to my friends to understand the real reason behind my anger. Besides I didn’t want to write and sound like a ‘wet blanket’ or a whinny little girl. Listening to someone throwing a fit and storming around can be depressing to me, so I didn’t want to drive anyone NUTS with me!

      I’m looking forward to participating in the IWSG!! Thanks for your thoughts and advice.

  10. I doubt that there’s a scale of insecurity, but if there is we’ve all been at the heavy end many time and will return. Don’t ever think you’re more insecure than someone else. That can never be the case.
    Besides, I think of being secure as not taking chances, so if you’re feeling safe and all warm and safe, you’re just not doing what you should do–standing at the edge of a cliff and wondering whether or not to jump.

    I think you’re on that precipice right now because you’ve joined this group. Welcome. Here’s to jumping off high precipices.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Thanks Lee, for your great comments. I do chuckle… I USED to dive off the high dive in my younger years. Now here is my chance to travel to some foreign land with high precipices so that I can jump into the luxurious waters.

      Right now with my husband’s serious illness, it does feel like I’m on the edge of that cliff with someone pushing, and I’m not sure the deep blue waters are below me. Hmmmm, I’ll have to find a parachute!

      The good news is that all my feelings that are over-flowing are giving me ideas, not to mention clarifying issues that I need to work on. Thanks bundles for being a friend!

  11. I think you’ve touched on something really profound…that sense of aloneness we feel in so many aspects of life. We think no other writer is as insecure as we are, or we must be the only ones who feel angry or frustrated when caring for a sick loved one.

    And yet these are the human condition. I think writing and sharing these thoughts and feelings can set us free, because writing connects us to others who say, “Yes, I have felt that way, too. We are no longer alone.”

    You have a way of connecting with people, Gwynn, and you’re more than capable of writing that book about your brother. Last year I heard a guy speak who’d written a book about his family. For some of them, he didn’t have the info to write about their daily lives, but through his research, he could imagine what their days might have been like. I have his book and would be happy to share it when we get back home.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Nadine, Thank you for your lovely compliment. Here is where my ‘perfectionism’, etc. kicks-in with… “BUT you have published books and I have ONLY published a few short stories.” I kick in to gear, get rejected, and give up. Another issue is that my stories are based on real life, not my imagination, which I have made no effort to use. I truly don’t think I have an imagination… but that’s not true… BUT, I have to make ME believe that! There are so many things I need to relearn and change if I am going to be effective.

      Plus, right now, John’s illness scares the daylights out of me as the doctors don’t know how to fix it. There is a whole lot of other garbage connected too… like me weird relationship with my husband. I do feel like I’m out on a limb and someone is working to saw my limb off the tree. What does help me is receiving comments like yours that make my mind kick-in so I can identify my issues (God help me… there’s lots!!). 😉

      What is really interesting is MY PART in my brother’s story. As they say, there are two sides to a coin. He and I were night and day different, but we did make a whole. I do so miss him. I would LOVE to borrow that book when you come home. Hopefully, by then my life won’t be SO CRAZY… but all of this sure slams the “end of life” issues right into my face. Maybe I should put my crazy feelings down on paper too.

      Thanks Nadine, for being a friend. I do so appreciate your thoughtful comments. I look forward to having that cup of tea with you when you return.

  12. Annecdotist says:

    Hi, Gwynn. Good to meet you on Gulara’s blog.
    I love your quote from Anthony Storr – I’ve read some of his stuff on therapy but I hadn’t come across that. Sorry life’s not treating you well at the moment but anger can be a gift, motivating us to fight for something better in those – perhaps few – areas where it’s possible.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Anne,

      I definitely enjoyed your story on Gulara’s Story Behind the Story. I too posted a story there. Gulara is a wonderful individual.

      Yes, my anger has been a gift. It is making me realize mistakes I’ve made. Plus, I recognized that I was not taking as good care of myself as I thought. I definitely NEED to step up to the plate here. I think my anger has pushed me to the border of recognizing that I do have more to write about, but I do need to do some sorting out on this subject.

      Thank you for taking the time to stop by my blog. It is lovely meeting you!

  13. charlie says:

    I’m in the same group as well. Currently, I’m not particularly motivated to do anything (see the blog). But perhaps I’ll push myself to get back to it.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Charlie, it’s great to hear from you. Will you be participating in the A – Z Challenge in April? I signed up… GOD HELP ME as I have no clue as to what to write about. I’ll take a look at your blog to see what you have been up to. Take care, and thanks for stopping by!

  14. Ashen says:

    I’m certain you have valuable experiences to share. Do it in your own way.

    This quote by Raymond Chandler – Realism and Fairyland – is a pointer:
    … the spirit of an age is more essentially mirrored in its fairy-tales than in the most painstaking chronicle of a contemporary diarist …

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Thanks Ashen for stopping by my blog. Chandler’s quote really hits the nail on the head. I had never thought of fairy tales too much, but you are correct the tales DO tell what is going on at that time in life. Interesting. Thanks.

  15. Taking care of your husband is a huge commitment.
    Perfectionist. That’s me! Makes writing at any speed a challenge. We can do it though.
    Sorry I’m so late but I did want to welcome you to the IWSG. You are in the right place.

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hey Alex, it is nice to meet you! Thanks for commenting. Dealing with perfectionism, especially since I typically write short stories adds to the problem of WHAT the heck am I going to write!? I’m glad I’m not alone. It has been lovely meeting others in the group! Thanks!

  16. Gulara says:

    What a wonderful post, Gwynn – funny, inspiring, honest and heartful! I loved reading it, and I love these series. I’ve got a couple of blogger friends who’ve been contributing to these series and I always get so much from reading about other people’s creative process. I’ve been thinking of contributing myself, but haven’t got around it (yet). Thank you for a good dose of inspiration, and I hope you have a chance to post again next month. You’ve got so much wisdom to share! Love you lots!

  17. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Gulara, it is interesting the perspective we have of others and their writing. I can’t vaguely imagine you as being insecure as you have such an excellent educational background and you have accomplished so much. I have floundered in life, but at the same time I never had any exciting goals. I thought I would simply be a housewife as my mother, her friends, and my friends were.

    So now I’m finding I have another role or two and I need to pull my thinking cap on. My husband ended up in the hospital again this week. His condition frightens me. The stress and fear, and being a one woman band here at the house are wearing me out. Finding my creativity is like cleaning out a deep clothes closet… “I know it is in there SOMEWHERE, but where.”

    I do SO appreciate your comments and support. You are a very kind and bright lady. Thanks and BIG HUGS!

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