The point is... I want to be a published author. I want to share this story, this world, and, most importantly, these characters that I created and love, with other people. Why, then, do I always get a little nervous when sharing the manuscript with my friends?
Perhaps, a part of me just wants the reader to experience the book when the book is actually a book, all bound and beautiful and plucked from a shelf at Barnes and Noble instead of reading it in .docx form. Another part of me is always working on it, continuing to polish and edit and change it so... I don't want people to read it because it's not quite done (I've been known to change Chapter 1 every other day). That makes for some difficult reading. I can then argue that, I'll never really be done until it's printed and sold. Then there's the part of me who knows how biased and kind my friends are. Perhaps I should seek a stranger's help, but that is also a bit terrifying. It's like having to trust your baby with the interwebs.
I'm working on accepting critique. I'm constantly struggling with letting more people read it so I can make it better. I've chosen my audience carefully, perhaps a little too carefully: Andrew, Bryce, Kenlyn, Grandma, and Grandpa - that made sense to me. SK, EB, CW, ME-D, EG, AC and LP - those were all sort of impulse decisions. Out of the above mentioned, I think only two... or two point five have actually read any of it (maybe SK ... EB read the first chapter I believe ... AC and the soon-to-be LP). I pick people based on a lot of things... how close we are, their literary tastes (i.e. love for Harry Potter), and/or their background in English or the arts... perhaps they're even writers themselves.
I'm looking forward to contests and such on the blogs I've been following to share my work and get it critiqued by the literary community. It's about time I did such things.