Monday, January 2, 2012

When Help Isn't Help

Everyone has an opinion, and as writer, I know I am guilty of wanting to make everything perfect. So, I find myself asking for a lot of opinions from others to validate my feelings on a subject. The problem is, a lot of times, instead of lifting my confidence about something I’ve created - that I’m actually secretly proud of, it makes me feel more sub-par, and thus in need of more self-validation from others.

It’s a vicious cycle.

Now don’t get me wrong, some good solid criticism is extremely beneficial and appreciated, but should we, as writers, throw away our own sense of art for the thoughts and opinions of others? What if Van Gough agreed with people that his art was too abstract and that no one would ever buy it, and then he formed to that conformity? I think we/I need to put things in perspective. Every single person out there likes and appreciates difference things, and certain things set them off.  We are all from different backgrounds and have varying preferences of taste. No one person views things the same way.

I am a true believer in honest criticism, (let’s face it, it is needed) especially in the writing world, but NOT at the expense of one’s own sense of art. If I’m looking for everyone’s personal ‘okay’ on something, it’s time to re-evaluate what I’m doing here. ‘Cause let’s face it, THAT is NEVER going to happen. What is important, is MY okay, because when it comes down to it, that’s all that matters.



Elizabeth said...

Sounds like some pretty good self-validation there, Rachel.
I mean, after all, where would Stephen King be today if he had listened to ANYbody??
I consider myself an amateur writer. Very amateur. However, I don't let the views of others influence what I write.
Remember: Those who can, write. Those who can't, read.
I enjoyed your blog. Good luck.

Rachel Deagan - Author said...

Well said, Elizabeth. Good words to remember. :)

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