Turning off the Negative
If you are an aspiring author/writer (still not sure which one I am), you HAVE to develop a thick skin. Between opening yourself for critique from other writers, to beta readers, to actually submitting your work (babies) for potential rejection by agents and publishers, I’m not sure you have alot of choice. At least not if you plan to stay in this “business” and not want to burn your typewriter (like anyone uses them anymore) in some sort of “I quit” ceremony before you ponder the worthless track your life is taking.
Okay, maybe that is a bit over dramatic, but you get the idea.
Recently, a member of my favorite writing group (Sisterhood of the Travelling Pens – on Scribophile and Goodreads) posted that she had let some family and friends beta read one of her stories only to be berated and beat down for the language she used, the type of story, and even some of the plot points. All because they didn’t feel that her subject matter was appropriately christian or suitable for young readers. This particular writer actually began to question her ability to write based on their comments. She began to buy into the hype– believe her own press, as it were.
This bothered me and actually inspired this little post.
The one thing I have learned in the past year of “serious writing” is this. You have to believe in yourself, what you are doing and your writing. Family means well, as do friends — but they don’t understand writing, publishing or what sort of creativity or work goes into the process. Sure, they mean well, and probably have your best interest at heart. But writing can be a lonely business. Stick with it, do what you think is right and hang the comments and not so gentle suggestions.
If you don’t believe in yourself, nobody else will either.