Apparently, my two year old niece talks in sentences, don’t you know. While my son (who is 4 weeks older) talks mostly in single words. Though, they are important ones like, “truck” and “llama” and “purple”. My nephew eats broccoli, don’t you know. I buy those juice boxes with the serving of vegetables instead of groaning when he spits out the carrot and says, “yuck!”
To say I’m almost as emotionally attached to my books as I am to my kids wouldn't be too much of a stretch. The attachment is different, but can feel just as strong. I want everyone to recognize the genius of my creation, the life changing power in its pages. But why did she make the best sellers list? Her book makes me want to gag.
There’s a reason why jealousy is called the ‘green eyed monster’ – it ain't pretty. And yet it’s such an easy trap to fall into, because we know and love (usually) our own work. We know how much effort we put into each page. Surely if everyone just read it, they would be convinced it’s great, too. Right?
Publishing—however you go about it—pits your book against every other book in your genre, on the website, or on the bookshelf. Whether you like it or not, you’re in competition against other authors…competition for the reader’s time.
However you feel about other writers and their work, however unfair and unjust it is that someone’s book does better than yours, someone gets a contract when you didn’t, or when no one seems to realize how hard you’ve worked, you need to realize that every writer feels this way from time to time. Every writer sees someone else as better, or their book as better and they get discouraged. Or they see a rubbish book get recognition for whatever messed up reason and they get mad. It doesn’t matter where you are in your career. Unless you’re completely satisfied, one hundred percent of the time, you’re going to feel this way at some point.
Being discouraged, disappointed, angry, frustrated … these are all signs of helplessness. You cannot change this situation, but it’s changing you.
Don’t let it.
Close your eyes, take a deep breath and GET BACK TO WORK.
Write more. Write BETTER. That’s the best way you can fight back, utilizing what you CAN control to tell the world all those stories vying for attention in your head. However it reaches the reader, it will touch hearts and change lives because God wants to do that with your work. If you’ll stop being sucked down into negativity and start typing….
Have you felt this way at some point, or had a particular experience you’d like to share? How did you deal with the green eyed monster in you?
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