Are you feeling stuck? Do you need a shove out of your comfort zone? Are you impatiently waiting for an agent to email or call you about representation after asking for an exclusive and it's been long enough that you're considering self-publishing because you don't think you'll ever land an agent? Do you secretly fear that your book won't ever be in print? Oh, wait. That's about me. I'm waiting impatiently for a specific agent to get back to me and fear that my book won't ever be published. Back to you!
If you're stuck in a place where you don't know what the next thing to do is and you're afraid of doing something out of your comfort zone, may I suggest singing karaoke at a country bar? Piece of cake you say? Okay, let's up the ante. Let's have you sing a country song in a packed country bar after a country gentleman sang, "On The Pontoon" which is a real sing-along and favorite in my neck of the woods that nearly brought down the house. What do you say? Would you go on next if you'd only sung in public once in your entire life? Deal?
Well, that's exactly what happened to me on Saturday night. And, no...I didn't sign up and had no idea my friend had secretly signed me up to sing, "Crazy" by Patsy Cline. She knew I'd only every done karaoke once and I'd just finished saying that I had a fear of singing in public, no matter how friendly the crowd was. She asked me what song I would sing IF I had the chance and I answered Cline's song because I have a low voice.
The one time was when I sang backup or more to the point, I was comic relief for a girlfriend whose birthday we were celebrating at the river and only because we'd done a few tequila shots beforehand. It was one of those moments where you are feeling the effects of liquid courage, believe me. I have a fear of singing in public, but I'd done it and although I didn't bring the house down, it was not nearly as terrifying as I'd thought it would be.
So, when I heard my name called out, I froze. What?! There had to be a mistake! "Come on, little lady! It's your turn to wow us!" My jaw dropped, eyebrows raised and I looked at my friends with a look that said, Are you friggin' kidding me?!" There was no backing out, people were clapping and I walked up to the stage, knees knockin'. The karaoke guy was ready with "Crazy", holy shnikies. No backing out now. The guy asked for a warm country welcome and the music started. He pointed at the reader and winked at me.
Good God. Well, I love that song and knew the words, but at that moment, if the screen hadn't been in front of me with lyrics and a bouncing ball on the words to be sung in what order, I'd have bombed.
I sang sort of on key and lo and behold, as I sang people went up to the dance floor to slow dance to me singing! CRAZY~! I enjoyed it and enjoyed the applause when I finished. What a hoot! As I walked back to my seat, I heard the karaoke guy say, "It's always the shy ones who surprise us." Well, waddya know :)
No, I'm not giving up my day job of writing and I'll continue to wait for said agent to respond. I have no illusions of landing on "American Idol", but I did conquer my fear of singing in public...and, as the night wore on and more people got up to sing, I realized I wasn't the worst singer of the night :)