So, I’m seeing a lot of negativity from some writers on the net. Since creative people are tangled in a vast swathe of emotions and sensations, negativity is certainly part of that tapestry and it has its place.
But too much and everything becomes dull. Now the negativity I’m speaking of isn’t even the expected kind – you know that self-hating, self-doubting type we writers sometimes find following us around like a bad smell.
No, this negativity is aimed at other people – at other writers, at reviewers, at readers.
There are too many writers who see other writers are competition. They are the enemy, they are the people they measure themselves against and if they come up wanting, well, that negativity just festers.
The thing is other writers are not our competition. We should not measure ourselves against them. (Unless you do that to strive to be better, to see a certain level of authorship that you want to achieve). However if that measuring stick leaves you bitter and resentful, then that stick is probably up your ass and you need to deal with it.
But if you are treating other writers are competition, someone to win against then you’ve already lost (I know, so cliche, but it works :p)
The only writer you measure yourself against is YOU. What you wrote 10 years ago, what you wrote 10 days ago, what you wrote yesterday. You compete with yourself in order to get better.
These people get a lot of stick. It’s not an easy job to review someones work and if you asked for that review, then you need to accept it might not swing in your favour. Yup that will sting but guess what? You need to deal with it.
Toughen up and understand that there will be other people who won’t like your work. People you didn’t ask to review, who instead bought your book and then felt the desire to review it.
If you lose your shit at these people, you’re only hurting yourself. It makes you look weak if you lash out at a reviewer.IF you asked for a review and someone kindly gave their time to read your work and leave and honest review, then accept it – gracefully, professionally.
However I’ve have people just ask me to read and review their work. I’m not even a reviewer anymore, though I do leave the odd reviews of books I’ve read every now and then. But the people who have approached me, often haven’t even bothered to learn what I like to read.
Already they are risking an issue by pitching their book to the wrong audience. So while you cannot guarantee a reviewer will like your work – at least make sure you target reviewers who read the genre you write.
This one is just plain weird. The idea that there are people who are buying your book, reading your book and if they say one thing you don’t like, you snap at them. Yes it’s sometimes done, though thankfully I’ve not heard about it much.
Readers are your customers. They can chose to read what they want, they can recommend things to friends, they can blog about their book choices and create instagram challenges.
They DON’T all have to like your book. They may comment to a friend that they didn’t like your book. If that happens, take a breath, scream into a pillow if you need it then just let it go.
Creativity is subjective. Some of the most well known and popular authors write books I don’t enjoy. Does that diminish them? No, they have people who love their work and you will too.
Enjoy the fact that people will like your work. Accept that there will be people who won’t like your work. Don’t snap, flame or bitch at people who don’t like your work.
Treat writing as a profession and be professional.
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Well, for those of you keeping track you will have noticed I missed writing the Wednesday Fiction Blog Hop post… yes, that was due to working overtime and coming home with a friggin headache that didn’t leave.
New guest post will be up next Tuesday and I have several more awesome guest posters lined up too!
NB: Photo purchased through http://www.depositphoto.com