Who am I not to be…?
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.”
Earlier this week, my dear friend and a fellow writer, PJ, sent me the above quote by the author Marianne Williamson.
I tucked my head and nodded with self-recognition. Fear of being in the light. Yup, that’s me.
I’m certain I’m in good company, though. During her lifetime, except for her brother Henry’s bragging to his friends, Jane Austen was not publicly recognized as the acclaimed author of her works. Yet, from reading various biographies about Jane and her own personal letters, I get the impression that, even if it was socially acceptable for a woman to write publicly, Jane would have preferred and insisted on maintaining her anonymity.
I’ve often wondered what Jane would have thought of all this—the movies, the plays, the books, the t-shirts, the mugs, and of course, the shrine in my office to her. I have, at least, two copies each of her major and minor works. I have the mug. And of course, at the spot where I rest my head at the back of my writing chair, I have my prize find at the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, a totebag that says ‘I Love Mr. Darcy.’
Would the indomitable Jane Austen admit to being frightened of her light? I think she might.
“Girl, you’re brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous!” If she materialized in front of me now, that’s what I would tell her. “Even dead nearly two-hundred years now, you’re more popular than Beyonce and Lady Gaga combined. Be proud of yourself, girlfriend!”
Ah! I see what PJ’s trying to tell me now with that Williamson’s quote.
You see, I’d confessed to PJ that I was suffering from the I-am-not-worthy reaction to the news that my debut novel, Compulsively Mr. Darcy, was nominated for a Best Book of 2012 poll, in a list where Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Game is also included. It’s like being invited to sing on American Idol with the likes of Beyonce and Lady Gaga when you know you’re tone deaf and can’t carry a tune.
I don’t know who Suzanne Collins has on her corner, but fortunately for me, I have the wise PJ and Williamson’s words.
Williamson’s quote continued with, “We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?”
Indeed, who am I not to be?
Move out of the way, Suzanne Collins, I want that Long and Short Reviews Best Book of 2012… with your help.
Voting continued to 2/14/13. Please vote for Compulsively Mr. Darcy.
One brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous commenter (voter or not) who shares with Austen Authors the many ways she or he is brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous (Who are you not to be!) will be picked at random on 2/14 to win a ‘I love Mr. Darcy’ totebag or a ‘Keep Calm and Read Jane Austen’ totebag from the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, England.