Best-selling thriller writer Ian Rankin writes a book a year. At a certain point, usually at the end of the first month, he is struck by "the fear." He becomes convinced that all the work he's done so far has been a waste of time, that this new book won’t be any good. When he mentions this to his wife, she usually asks, "Are you on page 65?" He then realizes that he goes through this phase with every novel, always at the same point. Many writers experience this kind of doubt about their work. And, as writing is such a lonely profession, they don't all have someone with whom they can share their frustrations.

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