Stage fright

By Madeline Harvey

In May of 2013, I wrote a blog about being the new girl in this refreshing albeit intimidating writers collective and detailed in earnest how I simply did not belong. Barracuda was my attempt at being a writer—a real writer, one where people actually read what I’ve wrote and can comment on the words I have painstakingly crafted. Truth be told, I actually tried to emulate the other girls. I wanted to give them something as equally entrancing, raw and profound; mostly because I was afraid of people wondering what my story thought it was doing brushing shoulders with the crème de la crème of in your face, gut-punching Indie writers.

Just between you and I and those stalking us, I wanted to hide under my bed when Cars & Girls went live. It was out there. And people were writing reviews about it.

How sensational. How strange. How staggering. Actually, how sickening.

How did I get to the point where the words I had written were out there, in the world, running wild and available for anyone to treasure or, more realistically, trash? By God, I am a vulnerable creature. I am weak and shy and (since we evidently are stripping away our dignity one exposé after another) I am used to being the background girl. The sidekick to Zoë Spencer – the annoyingly adorable, effervescent creature who could convince woodland creatures to make her bed if she so chose, and if they didn’t she’d call them tossers and throw rocks at them.

So, if the release of Cars & Girls had me running for a paper bag to hyperventilate into and I avoid the spotlight at any cost, why am I on the verge of having a web serial published? How did I get here again? Why I am about to be strung up and put on display again?
Because as confounding as it was to even be approached by Miss Jennings, Queen Bee and mastermind behind the Pankhearst collective, in the first place, it was three times more stupefying to see, and hear, and read that people liked my story. People liked Barracuda.

And, well,  Zoë Spencer thought it a wonderful idea for us to continue writing and have Etta and Emily meet up for a whirlwind adventure and, perhaps, romance. If you are to know any one true thing about me, it is that I will do literally anything my best friend asks. Not only because I love her immensely and without restrictions, it’s that she knows where I live and has a very determined way of not taking ‘no’ for an answer.

So, The Vegas Thing was born. While I honestly am still waiting for someone to say, what the hell are you doing here? and give me the boot, I am excited for my next foray into the wilderness that is writing.


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