Guestapostophobia (The Fear of Writing Guest Posts)



I was going to write an awesome guest post.

It was going to be spectacular.

Then I sat down to write.

It turned out to be a post about writing posts. I couldn’t believe it. And it was bad.

I don’t have trouble writing posts for my blog. They’re pretty easy. In fact, I write them in my head all the time like some crazed commentator.

Then I tried to write for someone else’s blog. This caused much panic, self-doubt, writer’s block, and a small amount of sweating, which shall collectively and henceforth be known as SEBS (Someone Else’s Blog Syndrome). SEBS can range from mild to severe.


Just type.

If you’ve been offered a guest post, go for it. If you follow someone who has a guest series, ask about it. You might even write something great. But, hey, if it’s bad, that’s okay, too. Move on.

If it really sucks, well…you’ll make a lot of people happy. Because they’ll think, “Wow, that stinks. I could write a post so much better than that.” And they will. And they’ll submit it and guest post. See? You’ve helped a fellow blogger or two. Doesn’t that make you happy?


My Sunday thoughts in 200 words or less.


Have you written any guest posts? Do you develop SEBS? Is it just me or is writing a guest post more difficult than writing your own?


* Look at the photo again. Sure, the pink flowers seem pretty…until you stick your face close to them and realize there’s a spider sunbathing inches from your nose. That’s my photographic metaphor for writing a guest post.


38 thoughts on “Guestapostophobia (The Fear of Writing Guest Posts)

  1. I don’t know why guest posting is so much more tense than anything you post on your own blog, but it is. ‘Needs more work’ as my teacher used to say, so perhaps that’s the answer. Or ‘Fake it until you make it’ …

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Much laughing here, Sarah. You’re too funny. I get guestpostophobia too, you know – the deer in the headlights look and the oh crap I got nothin’ panic. I can barely think of things for my own blog – so you’re way ahead of me there. Wanna guest post on my blog?

    Liked by 1 person

    • You do not. Really? I can’t picture that. But, yes, the “oh, crap, I’ve got nothing” panic. That’s it exactly. I can just see the two of us standing in the middle of the road…wide-eyed…headlights headed our way. Noooo!

      You’re not serious about your blog, though, right? 😉 I laughed but then was like, “oh, crap…” You know the rest.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am serious. My blog is so seat-of-the-pants it’s ridiculous. I have nothing prepared ahead of time and I’m scrambling the day before. I’m terrified that one day, I’m just going to run out of ideas and my online life will come to a crashing halt. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’d love to do a post! *breathes into paper bag*

        I can’t imagine you running out of ideas. I don’t prepare, either, so I know what you mean about pantsing posts. I love your blog so clearly your scrambling works. I’ll email you. 🙂 Thanks, my friend.


    • Inner critics suck. Well, sometimes they’re helpful. Here’s what I’ll do. I’ll offer it a vacation, get some guest posts in, then stick my tongue out at it when it returns. I’m so mature, I know.


  3. That’s a great way to frame it — if you don’t succeed you make someone else feel better. My hope is that Carrot Ranch can be a place where writers can overcome that fear. More like a discussion among friends who all love to write and read.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lmao you’re hilarious! I love your posts, but I do get you on the SEBS thing. I remember when I was first asked to be a guest on a blog, you’d think I had to do a public speaking gig, it was intimidating. But gratefully, I’ve done a fair share of them now and it becomes like riding a bike. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. FYI, your guest post didn’t stink. 🙂

    I remember doing blog tours and trying to come up with clever sounding posts for different blogs. I’ve found asking them what type of post they want tends to help stir the creative juices. One of them was a bucket list. I put together a list of things I wanted to do, and somehow incorporated a bucket into every one of them. 🙂 If clever doesn’t work, cheesy usually does.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve only done a couple of guest posts, Sarah, and with one I was asked to produce something specific, so I haven’t had too much to worry about so far. Maybe I will if I get asked more often.
    Hope all is well with you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah, the specific is helpful but, still, I do get a bit…panic-stricken. I can’t picture you getting too worried. I’m going to stop waiting to be asked and *cringe* ask others. It’s painful but I’m going to try. I’m getting by, as always, hope you’re doing well. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Don’t be too sure about this calm and outgoing exterior – it hides a more than adequate supply of insecurities.
        Asking won’t do any harm. The worst that can happen is they say “No.” If anything, I’ve been holding off on that kind of thing, because I know I’ll have more time for it in a few months. Then I’ll put together a strategy and, if I want guest posts, I’ll come knocking, because you do have some valuable stuff to say. If I don’t, you can pretty much guarantee that I’ve not asked anyone.
        “Getting by” doesn’t sound overly inspiring, but I think I understand.
        As for me,,, Let’s just say there’s a lot of change happening in my life at the moment. It’ll be fantastic when it’s over, but it’s got some challenges in the mean time! Still, the challenges make you appreciate the good stuff!

        PS Are you stalking me? My phone seems to have pinged a lot this evening, and your name has accompanied most of those pings.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, the exterior hiding insecurities. You hide it well, my friend. I know, I keep saying that, “The worst they can say is ‘no'” but then I get all self-doubty. I want to put together a strategy! That sounds so nice. I’m utterly disorganized. And, yes, “getting by” is what I can manage to honestly say at the moment. I’m sorry it seems things are rough for you, too. Challenges certainly make you appreciate the good stuff. Yes. They do that.

        I would be honored if you knocked on the Lemon Shark blog for a post. (That sounded odd.) See what works best for you and your blog and, if you decide to do anything, I’ll be here. Treading water.

        Holy crap! I’m pinging you?! 😮 I’m so sorry. What is that? Well…let’s see… I’ve visited your blog. Read that. Followed that link over to your guest post at Sue’s. Read that. Liked and commented on all the above. So…huh. I can’t imagine where the pings are coming from. *sigh* One of life’s great mysteries, I suppose.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hey, I’m not complaining about being stalked. Not by you, anyway… It’s the creepy old scoutmaster down the street I’m worried about.
        The strategy thing is only possible for me because I’ll have the time to do it. If all goes to plan, I’ll have stopped working by the beginning of July and can focus on the writing. That’s part of the current challenge, so there’s good stuff at the end of it. The other challenges relate to my personal life and are self-inflicted, so I can’t complain. Some of it may become more public in the next few months – I don’t mean CNN public, but such is the world of blogging that things can end up being shared more than you’d like. We’ll see.
        But let’s end on your self-doubtyness (need to check my dictionary on that one). You are a terrific writer, with an immense talent. (Just like me!) And your personality comes across well here on the blog. You have every reason to be filled with confidence. That said, I recognise that the confidence comes from within, and many great artists have been filled with self-doubt, so just because you are fantastic doesn’t mean you automatically feel it. Still, it doesn’t do any harm to remind you. The next step is to gently push the self-doubt aside (just for a crucial ten minutes here and there) and take some action. You can do great things, Sarah

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes. Time. Ugh… Well, very happy to hear you’re focusing on writing! That plan sounds fantastic. Though I am sorry to hear of your troubles. I hope things work out okay (and in a private way, if possible). Sending my best to you, my friend. And thank you for the lovely compliment to combat my self-doubtiness. (It’s totally a word. I’ve used it in a game of scrabble.) 🙂


  7. Oh yes, I know about SEBS-itis. It’s thrilling to be asked to write a guest post, but when it comes time to produce, it can be a little intimidating. I always want to send my Very Best Writing, so I AGONIZE over it.

    You make it look easy, though, so I’m going to pop over and see how a pro does it. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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