I've been posting around on various forums with a pen name, that all have to do with either movies or books, and after reading them all I have to say: why should I bother writing at all? I mean, people's reasoning for saying something sucks is so confusing and contradictory nowadays, I have absolutely NO idea if what I'm writing is bad or good. It's like one gigantic Catch-22 (another book that supposedly "sucks"). If you write something just for fun or write something in a simple prose style, people say your writing is "shallow" and "stupid". If you write a story that has a deeper meaning or has a statement to make on our society, or is written in a sophisticated prose style, people say your writing is "pretentious" (the latter, as a fan of Nabokov, really pisses me off). If you write in a particular genre or about a particular topic, like erotica or vampires, people accuse you of "jumping on the bandwagon" and "trying to make a quick buck", regardless of the quality of the writing. And then there are the smaller aspects of writing, like word choices or punctuation. If you use a lot of swear words, people will say you're "pandering to the masses", and if you use a little of them or none at all, people will your dialogue is "unrealistic". If you try to experiment with literature like Cormac McCarthy or Junot Diaz (no periods or footnotes, respectively), people will act like the kid from Emperor's New Clothes and say it's "trash" being passed off as art. With all this stuff raging against me, why should I bother to attempt to be a writer at all? It's like David and Goliath if Goliath was 100 feet tall and David was only 5 inches. It's impossible. It's hopeless. At least I have The Catcher In The Rye to console me.