Growing a Thick Skin for Winter

Sometimes it’s really tough giving a crap about what other people think. Honestly, how liberating must it feel to be a self absorbed a-hole who either doesn’t notice or doesn’t care for the opinions of others? Or to be so self-righteous, you simply believe that everyone else is just wrong anyway? That would have its merits too.

But, alas, as far as I know, I possess none of the above mentioned personality traits. I have the opposite personality trait. I am the validation junkie, the one who lives for the praise of others and dies just a little inside from their criticisms.

And that second part really sucks. It just does. I can get mad. I can rant and rave about the injustice of that anonymous reviewer that gives me one rate-reducing star with no explanation, or the other reviewer who uses my books as a platform to justify his or her disgust with an entire genre of writing (or gender of writers, or political leanings of writers, or all self-published writers in general). But that doesn’t make the cut sting any less. I still get hurt.

Do critics ever think about the pain they cause when they voice their negative opinion for the world to see? Are they working under the assumption that a creative person who has the audacity to share their heart-felt creation with the public deserves ridicule for efforts? Maybe so.

I have opinions. I voice them to people I’m comfortable sharing my opinion with. I would never make a decent critic. I was raised with the time honored mantra of, “if you can’t say something nice, mumble something snarky about it to the closest ear and move on.”

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