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On not putting yourself out there

As writers feel more and more pressure to be 24/7, real-time public figures, we need to consider those who are disclosure-averse, who prefer to hide away and let their work stand as they have constructed it. We commonly celebrate living openly as a courageous act, being “thick-skinned” as a virtue, yet some people’s mental health (and ability to produce great writing) is intimately connected to a fundamental need for privacy. In embracing an accessible digital age, with countless instructional blog posts about how to gleefully “put yourself out there,” we are inadvertently suggesting that those who create boundaries and limits are both cowardly and doomed to fail.

Read the full essay in The National Post’s Afterword.