Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Lessons Learned

There are moments in everyone's life that it seems all the negativity is pointed directly at you. No matter how hard you try, what amount of time you spend nothing ever seems to work out for you and its hard. The old saying (Well at least it is to me) of same shit different pile - is reflected in daily life.

Before I get any further, I am not dissing anyone. I have an awesome support network in place for my writing and I love everyone whose been there for me. Its when a stranger, someone you don't know from Adam looks at you and says you're not good enough or you need to throw this away and start over that it hurts.

Yes, you want an honest opinion. As a writer opinions matter but you have to be willing to look past what someone is saying negatively and look at the bright side. Recently I got stumped on the rewrites for a chapter, my beta reader/critique partner sent me back a whole lotta red ink, I got negative feedback for another chapter and then on top of all of that, the awards I'm trying to run through a fandom have so many people not reading the rules...I'm sure you can see where one might get discouraged here.

I was no different. I was ready to toss it all away, throw the entire bundle out the window and forget about it. But some really nice people gave me some good advice and I got to thinking about it.

Your job as an author is to spin a tale of romance or mystery or whatever, but it must draw the reader in. You can have all the faith in yourself but if you're not willing to at least think about the valid points another makes, then perhaps you need to reevaluate your own image.

Easier said then done, ladies and gents. If this experience has taught me anything at all, its that a rock is just that - a rock. Great to lean, unmoved by much, but sooner or later you have to stand on your own two feet.

Tis better to be the oak than the stone - for in the storm the oak will bend, the rock merely gets hammered by the rain! - by me.

So in closing, I will say this: If someone hands you a page of red ink, or a bad comment about yourself or your work, take it. Look at it. Pick the knowledge and valid points from it and toss out the rest because, ultimately you are the one who is doing the writing. You are the one holding the pen and its up to you to decide how 'help' is taken.

Until next time,
Patricia.

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