A lot of writers and artists spend a lot of time doubting and feeling unhappy. Why? That’s the question. Part of it is that we’re creative people. Creative people tend to feel big feelings. We live in feelings and interpretations and expression.
That can be hard on a heart.
It’s hard to believe in yourself when the industry makes it so hard for you not to believe.
Writing is hard on hearts. Rejections come fast and easily and the whole field is so subjective. Outside validation can be hard to come by.
We Expect to be Perfect
We are not perfect.
We apologize when we are normal. We apologize for being human. We apologize for who we are as if who we are is supposed to beyond human.
We see our books, our arts, our blogs as perfect, idealized, finished products and that level of perfection is hard to get to in real life. So….
We Tear Ourselves Down
For some of us, we’re so used to other people tearing us down for being weird, daydreaming, quirky, different that we try to do it before they do – that way it doesn’t seem to hurt that much? But it’s not good for us to do that.
So how do we get happy?
Keep working and creating. There is power in persistence, in not giving up. There is happiness in losing yourself to the process.
Let Forgiveness Happen
You can call it grace if you prefer, but allow yourself to be human. Don’t be so harsh on yourself when you fail or make a mistake. Embrace that failure because it allows you to know you are human. Not God.
Realize That You Are Absolutely Good Enough
When people praise you, let them. When people come to see you, embrace that. When they listen to you speak, read your work, buy your painting, tell you something awesome, let them. Don’t ignore the good to hold onto the bad.
When people love you or praise you? They are giving you a gift. It’s not cool to turn that away. You don’t want to be an arrogant butt face, but allow people to be kind to you if they are moved to do so.
Dog Tip for Life: Accept the treats that life brings you, man.
Writing Tip of the Cast: A really good way to be a better writer is to think outside of yourself and imagine you as your character. But a really good way to be a confident writer is to allow yourself to be human, to rejoice in the fact that your story isn’t perfect at the first try and/or draft. Forgive yourself when you use the word ‘feel’ 572 times in an 50-page story. Forgive yourself when you accidentally have everyone fall in love with the main character or you forget to have a setting. It’s okay. Acknowledge it. Fix it. Love yourself anyway.
Yep, it’s the part of the blog where I talk about my books and projects because I am a writer for a living, which means I need people to review and buy my books or at least spread the word about them.
So, please buy one of my books. 🙂 The links about them are all up there in the header on top of the page. There are young adult series, middle grade fantasy series, stand-alones for young adults and even picture book biographies.
I’m being interviewed live on WERU radio on Thursday, May 10 at 10 a.m. You can call in and ask questions and be on the air with me! The livestream for the station is here.
I’ll be at Book Expo America in NYC on June 1 at 11:30 – 12 at the Lerner booth signing copies of the Spy Who Played Baseball. A week before that,
I’ll also be in NYC presenting to the Jewish Book Council . Come hang out with me!
The podcast DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE is still chugging along!
Thanks to all of you who keep listening to our weirdness as we talk about random thoughts, writing advice and life tips.
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