Underwhelm (transitive verb)
: to fail to impress or stimulate
I think one of the biggest barriers to science or writing science fiction is the fear of coming up with a great theory or a great story and then finding out that it is really underwhelming when released to the general public. Something about the idea was just so great in your head but when executed turns into a raspberry.
Remember the Segway? It was being touted as the greatest accomplishment in the history of mankind and was going to be THE game changer. Don’t get me wrong. I think the science behind that invention is way cool. The problem is, when you work up the expectation that the best thing since sliced bread is coming, and the President of the United States falls off a hurts his knee, that is bad.
The same goes for that novel or story you are working on. I like my novel a lot, something I couldn’t say about my first novel which I couldn’t even finish. But what if this one gets finished, I send it out for comments and feedback, and get back yawns with crickets chirping in the background.
Surely there has to be an audience for any story, right? Have you ever put something out there only to have it returned as being so-so, marginal, or so far off track an editor wouldn’t give it a second glance? It is scary, for sure, but I am up for the challenge and I hope you are too!