Great… no, REALISTIC Expectaions
The topic for the Query Tracker blog chain this time was selected by Kate Quinn. I am the end of the chain this week, following H.L. Dyer, so I’ve had the benefit or detriment of reading everyone else’s thoughts on the topic. The benefit is enjoying my writer friends’ thoughts on the topic. Being last is detrimental in that the topic has pretty much been covered–and quite eloquently, I might add.
The topic is:
How as a writer do you find the balance between having too much or too little confidence in your work?
Well, I find that balance in writing the same way I do with all things in my life. I am reality-based and optimistic, which makes coping with rejection and criticism comfortable for me, though not always easy. Nothing worth doing is easy.
Sounding like a sermon? Yep. This is a serious topic Kate has selected.
Much of my life has been devoted to acting and theatre, both as a performer and a teacher. The performing arts are about rejection. Rejection doesn’t come in a slip in the mail in theatre. Often it comes in a public post or a face-to-face rejection. One has to have confidence to endure in that environment.
Because of my background, I am not inclined to take rejection and criticism personally, which helps boost my confidence. To date, I’ve been able to take criticism and apply it constructively because it doesn’t hurt my feelings.
As for too much confidence–that is where the reality-based view point comes into play. I do my best to remain optimistic, but writing is a tough business. The odds of getting published are slim. It would be hard to become over-confident, which is a good thing, because once a writer thinks she is “there,” her growth will slow down. The learning curve in the publishing industry is huge. I doubt anyone’s over-confidence would last for long.
Keep it positive and keep it real.
Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.
~William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure, 1604
The next topic in the blog chain will be selected and begun by Archetype. Check out the entire chain in the links to the right of this page.