Have you ever worked a long time on your writing just to have someone critique everything about your piece? Maybe someone told you it sounded like a first draft even though it was the tenth. I’m sure every writer has been there at least once.
Our writing is a large part of ourselves. We put time and effort into creating the perfect prose and making our characters someone we can connect to. That means when we show someone our writing, we’re showing them a piece of ourselves.
And sometimes sharing your creative side can be scary. If your friend doesn’t like your writing or thinks it’s bad, you might think about their comments even if other people praised it.
But getting over our writing fears is how we grow as writers. It takes courage to have someone take your work and circle everything with a red pen. You can let go of your writing fears by learning to embrace critiques and rejection.
Understanding Not Everyone Will Like Your Writing
One of the first ways to get over your writing fears is knowing that not everyone will like your writing. After all, we all have our own preferences when it comes to what kind of stories we like to read. Maybe you prefer certain genres over others, and that’s why you choose to write in the genre you love.
And what happens when someone simply doesn’t like your writing? They might be more apt to feel more critical towards the work, even if unfairly, since it wasn’t their cup of tea to begin with. For example, if you write a vampire romance, there’s a lot of people who would automatically associate it with Twilight and wouldn’t care to read your interpretation. However, there’s others who live to read every book in that genre, and they might be more appreciative of your version.
The same goes for literary agents. Some of them specialize in young adult fiction and won’t work with sci-fi authors. Others are looking for middle grade and never work with adult romances. An agent may reject your work simply based on the premise alone, but that doesn’t make your writing bad, since there could be an agent who would love it!
Criticism is Healthy
So not everyone is going to like your writing, and you’ll need to accept that reality. That means you’re going to receive criticism for what you write, whether you ask for it or not.
That’s right — criticism doesn’t just happen as red lines on a copy you give to a peer to review. Even after you’re published or start becoming established as a writer, people will publish their opinions about your writing on their blogs, Youtube, and Goodreads.
But criticism is healthy as an author. If everyone absolutely loved everything you wrote, then you’d never find your flaws or where you can potentially improve. While a good handful of negative reviews will be nonsense (THIS IS THE WORST BOOK!!!!), there’s always a chunk that offers constructive criticism that can help you grow.
As a writer, you’ll need to learn to sit down and read criticism with an open mind. Look for trends in what people say, and apply it to your work to make it better. You don’t have to change every part of your writing, but it’s always good to know where you can potentially improve.
Expect criticism, and look for the constructive kind. This is key to viewing negative comments as a way to help you improve your writing. Take their negativity and turn it into productivity.
Cherish Your Writing
Okay, so we know there’s going to be criticism and ranters who don’t like your work. However, just because those people exist doesn’t mean you still can’t cherish your writing.
If you love a character and the time you put into them, don’t be ashamed of your work even if someone doesn’t feel the same. You put the time and effort into writing, and you shouldn’t discount the hard work you’ve done just because of someone else.
There’s nothing wrong with being proud of your work even if it’s filled with flaws. What you’ve written is still a part of you, and you can love your writing while still improving and evolving. You don’t have to feel negativity towards what you wrote when it was important at one time of your life.
You can continue to love your writing as your improve, even when you read it ten years from now. Don’t let someone else’s words dictate how you personally feel.
Embracing Your Accomplishments
It takes a lot of time and effort to write a book. There’s writing the first draft, rewriting scenes, editing, formatting, and a whole bunch of things that come packaged with writing a book.
There’s many people who say they want to write a book and never will, so if you do, then embrace your accomplishment. Whether you self-publish or traditionally publish, you’ve still accomplished something big in your life.
Which means you don’t need to let jealous or angry individuals cause you to feel differently about your writing. After all, you’ve put the time and energy into it, so you should embrace your accomplishment to it’s fullest.
What is your biggest writing fear?
Do you have a writing fear? Let me know in the comments below.
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