CHELLE CORDERO: Facing her shyness head on

Growing up, I always tended to be the shy introvert who was comfortable just being part of “the group”. Maybe that’s why I set my sights on a career in theatre – at least I could pretend to be someone else and could still remain hidden.

I had a steady boyfriend for a while during high school, I met him at a city summer theatre project, we did not go to the same school. Since I didn’t wind up with him for the long haul I’ll just use his first name. Jeff. I remember a date where Jeff (nicely) admonished me for being so shy and he decided to “butt me out of it”; Jeff himself was anything but shy. In the middle of NYC’s Time Square, Jeff stopped in the street, holding my hand so I couldn’t run the other way, and sang (LOUDLY) the song from Fiddler “Do You Love Me?”. All of the bystanders stopped to listen, I turned bright red, and when he finished the song, everyone applauded.

Yep, that was the last time I ever allowed myself to FEEL shy. Since then I try to face whatever I find intimidating head on, I think it works.

I find that I always get a bit nervous before an author event or a live interview. Shortly before the interview I try to organize my thoughts and even re-read the book we’ll be discussing so that I sound as familiar with the subject as I should be. I take my time responding to questions and make sure I understand the question being asked. If things really get beyond my nerves, I resort once again to my acting classes and just pretend that I am an author, lol.

I’ve never had a problem with the actual writing process, I tend to flow once I get started. It’s the selling myself afterward where I hesitate. Luckily, I have a great relationship with my publisher (my novels are published by Vanilla Heart Publishing) so that takes some of the pressure off. A writer must feel very confident in order to promote her work and convince people to read the latest novel.

Fortunately I believe in my work so it’s easy for me to feel right about promoting.

My latest novel: Hyphema
Hyphema: Bleeding in the eye caused by trauma… Matt Garratti, a paramedic from New York, moves his wife and son to North Carolina to work at his dream job as a flight medic. Pakistani born Sudah, his wife, receives frosty stares and insensitive comments from their new neighbors... Matt wonders if he is pursuing his dream or bringing his family into a nightmare from which they may never wake.

My website:

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  1. LOL! So did you join in? And did you 'love him?'

  2. Maybe I turned to fiction for the same reason you turned to theater. I can write about all kinds of people while hiding here in my den.

  3. I had a "teen-age love" and still have a fondness for him (we are not in touch anymore, but I do know someone who knows him and I know he is doing well and is happy).

    ...and I just couldn't wait to get out of Times Square that day! Gosh, I was sooooo embarassed!

  4. Hi Malcolm, yes, we can hide while we are writing - but it's facing folks at author events that can still be a challenge - can't wait 'til I am really famous and can afford to be egocentric and a hermit!

  5. My favorite activity at social events with strangers--hiding out behind the potted plants!

  6. Sounds like many of us have this in common. :-)

  7. Hi Robert & Melinda,I wonder if the introvert side of us (writers, actors, artists, etc) are the reason we need to find a path for our creativity? probably.

    Thanks for stopping by.


  8. Hi Chelle, I still have not overcome my fear of reading my work aloud to an audience. Maybe someday soon!

  9. An inspiring post. I've found books - whether written or read - are a wonderful social lubricant. They make events a much easier prospect.