“I can do this!” and “I feel like a fraud!” are not usually seen as similar phrases.
But they are – two sides of the same proverbial coin.
This is really clear in writing. Many of us started writing because we read a story or article and said, “Holy crap, I can write better than that.”
There’s a bit of a shock when you realize it’s not quite as easy as you thought, but that initial euphoric annoyance will buoy you through the edits, and rewrites, and rejection letters. (Well, maybe some of the rejection letters.) And it’s a beautiful thing, a deep dark slice of schadenfreude pie when a work panned by a professor or critic or even family member sells.
Then you find yourself wondering when they’re going to find you out.
Maybe it’s with publication. Maybe it’s your first panel, or the first time you talk shop with the other authors you respect, or when a reader tells you that a bit of prose you thought was crap was their favorite part.
Regardless when, you suddenly wonder if you’re a fraud.
They’ll find you out. You won’t be able to produce again. They’ll find you out.
But it’s all the same thing. You’re amazing – just like everyone else. Because you can do it. Everyone – everyone – feels like a fraud at least part of the time. Be honest about what you do know and don’t know, what you can do and can’t do, and then just go with it.
And sometimes, if you don’t know what you’re capable of, if you don’t know if it’s possible, just go and do it anyway.