Anyway, I got super side-tracked this week as I put “fake it till you make it” fully into practice. I’ve been a firm believer in “fake it till you make it’ for, oh hell, more than ten years. Probably twelve at least. That’s about when I decided my life SUCKS with a capital S and got the F out of Dodge. I got a free ride scholarship to Colorado State University and went back to school, then got accepted into University of Colorado Health Science Center (the Medical School, same grad school that psycho killer who shot people up in the theater down the road went to) and started on my PhD. I left that program, never shot anyone over it (go figure), just decided stressing out about how many nanograms of siRNA I had to transfect into my incubator full of cells every day was NOT my thing.
Quitting that program was the best thing I ever did. I got a master’s degree and I’m totally happy because without that MS in forensic toxicology I would’ve never written a high school course in Forensic Science, which is still one of my best sellers even today.
When I decided to write science curriculum I felt like I was faking it. I had zero writing skills, I mean, seriously the ONLY writing classes I ever took were in regular school and the research paper one they make you do in college. Yes, I wrote a master’s paper, but that was not hard. I’m just saying, it wasn’t. (And if you want to read it, it’s actually pretty cool – it was on microbial forensics and how they track shit like anthrax when there’s an outbreak…my grad school now has an entire class on that subject and I’d like to think I was the one who put that little idea in their heads!)
But I felt like an imposter when I started to write non-fiction even though I was technically an expert. Especially when people would write to me about my grammar. I suck at grammar. The only thing I really have going for me is an unusual writing voice because I write like I’m talking to you. My students and parents love it. Maybe that’s why I felt Junco’s story had to be told in first-person present?
Anyway, I’ve gotten over that feeling as far as the non-fiction stuff goes…I’ve written almost two hundred unit studies and courses. I’m seasoned, as they say.
But I feel like an imposter in fiction now. I’m not anything special, I’m just one person with a story to tell. So that’s where “fake it till you make it” comes in. When I was getting ready to go back to school to study science I acted like knew what I was talking about, but secretly I studied MY ASS OFF. Seriously, studied my ass off. Spent an entire summer taking calculus and I studied that shit for like 2 hours a day. (Got a B+).
And it worked, ya know? I studied and told myself I was smart and I could do this stuff. And I did. I learned it and got into a very competitive PhD program. So it wasn’t for me? That’s OK! I tried and I got what I wanted at the time.
This fiction stuff is the same way. I’m faking it – I’ve got an awesome website (because I’m a really good web designer, I could never afford to pay someone to do that), I got the editor, the cover artist, the blog tours, booked some advertising blah, blah, blah. I’m not so much pretending I’m an author, because really – I am an author. I’ve written hundreds of things.
But I’m pretending I’m a publisher and I’m my number one client. 🙂
I’m my number one client.
I was asked to give a prize away for the 25th anniversary of a homeschool group in New England a while back and the woman who runs it asked me if I wanted to send in some swag for their auction table. I’ve never made any promotional items for my other business, so I decided I’d make some bookmarks. You can’t tell in this picture, but they are shiny and smooth! I fell in love with the tangible swag and decided to order me some for Junco.
I got them in the mail today – I love them! I’m in love with my Junco swag! Two-sided book marks and some stickers. Life is good. Fake it till ya make it, baby!
I also decided I wanted Junco to have those mini-series banners you see all over the web courtesy of Sarah at www.ImLovingbooks.com. She wasn’t taking orders anymore, so I made my own. Fake it till ya make it, baby! I’m faking the shit out of it, but ya know what? I don’t care. I’m having fun. I’m gonna give this swag out somehow, someway and I’m gonna love every minute of faking it.
Maybe I’m not the next Big Thing. But I can be the next Good Thing. Or the next Fun Thing. And I’m OK with that. Do your best, try your hardest, put in the time – get seasoned. It works. And until you get to that place in life, fake it.
Be what you want to be and it will come. Fake it till you make it. Oh, and get the code for the mini-banners HERE at the I Am Just Junco Website – then put those suckers somewhere visible!!!!