Writer's Envy

Published by maidahl in the blog maidahl's blog. Views: 74

People get jealous when some things work and others don't. It's a cutthroat business. Everyone screws up sometimes, while another story sells. Criticism get be brutal, like punches to the gut. People get ruthless, and rejection can keep you from getting back up when you've sunk to your knees in discouragement. Jealousy just makes everything worse. I used to envy some writers in my classes that got published when I didn't. It made me miserable when I compared myself to others. I'm kind of a perfectionist and I grew frustrated. I judged myself. I graded myself as inferior in some miniscule way to my peer group, some having succeeded where I floundered. I had magnificent success in other aspects and grew proud.

I've found that being so competitive is such a turn-off. I've learned to be humble and stop being so aggressive. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Every man I meet is my superior in some way. In that, I learn of him." No one should bear with them the burden of a competitive mentality. Let's be logical. Every writer is unique. No one can be better than that thing you do best that only you can do. There's no need to weigh yourself down with added heaviness of competition. Learn from the best. Learn from the underlings. Learn from what doesn't work. Learn from your own failures and successes. And when someone has a triumph, feel happy for them and offer up congratulations. It makes you feel better about yourself. Oh, and don't just flatter them. Flattery is merely telling people what they think of themselves. It isn't genuine, and it gets obvious.

No one should feel inferior. Hone your craft. Where there is talent, there was practice. Where there is made effort, there is reward. And in the end, make improvements because you want to be better than you were last night, last year, not better than that boy in your class who got a deal with a publisher you've been eyeing. You're better than you ever were. Go give that boy a hug and tell him he deserves it! He does! He must have worked hard.
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