Most of the creative people I know have one big quality in common. Mistakes don't scare them. They don't really care if they get something wrong. What they do care about is getting better.
Many of my creative type friends are perfectionists, too, but that seems totally different from fear of failure in the souls of these intrepid groundbreakers. They won't suffer imperfection in their own work. But they acknowledge the mistakes, the flaws, and sand them out. Striving for perfection requires mistakes. I don't know how they always knew this but I had to learn it. I'm lucky I've always gravitated toward people who are lots cooler than I am.
These people who are so much cooler than me did things I would never have had the balls to try. One got an MFA. She is now a sculptor. A couple majored in glass blowing. I thought they were nuts, but really cool. Wished them luck with that. They now have their own studio where they do custom work, their own stuff, and give lessons.
A friend from high school wanted to act. Even at seventeen I knew that was pie-in-the-sky but I certainly hoped it would work out for her. Maybe she could teach drama and speech when she grew out of it. But guess what? Her acting credits now include Spider-Man (yes, THE Spider-man, not the cartoon), Beauty Shop, Never Been Kissed, and a buttload of other stuff. She narrated the audio book for The Help.
Another friend from high school read cheesy romance novels all the time. I knew they were cheesy because they had people kissing on the covers but I didn't judge because all my books had dragons or unicorns on the covers. She also wrote cheesy romance in her spiral bound notebook. I figured it was as good a hobby as any. I didn't have time for hobbies because I was too busy taking all the A.P. classes my high school offered. Her third book just published in April.
I have a double major in Biology and English. English because I just liked it and Biology because I knew I would never use the English part of my degree in anything that would pay the bills. I now find the science portion of my educational background to be extremely useful in Trivial Pursuit and making an educated guess as to whether my children's runny noses are due to allergies, bacterial infection, or virus.
I sure wish sometimes that I had grown a pair a little younger. I always liked writing. It just seemed so stupid to think I could do anything with it. I finally got over being too chicken to try it and even if I never get it right it is the most fun thing I have ever done. Even the mistakes.
So cheers to all of you who had the courage to do what you loved even though it really was pretty dumb. I always knew you could do it!