I was emailing a friend recently about life in general and my seemingly eternal struggle with self-doubt and my writing and I said this:
Why do I worry about possible bad reviews for work I haven't even finished yet, when I get shitty comments every week from a comment I made on a YouTube video (about feminism in Australian politics)??!
Today I got yet another shitty comment from a man - they are always from men on that particular post - and I asked myself that question again. I mean, they have to go into a video that they clearly disagree with, search through the comments and then (rather than just press an up or down thumb) type out an angry/disparaging/ugly comment. It takes concerted effort on their part. And because I know they will be ugly comments, I think in future I will try not to read them. I think that ‘do not read YouTube comments’ is a good rule for life. Every time I think humanity has a chance, I will read something that makes me want to kill it with fire. Unfortunately Google sends them all straight into my inbox.
I was also listening to Mur Lafferty’s podcast called ‘I should be writing’.
She echoes the confidence issues I have and interviews other writers who admit to the same issue; ‘real’ writers with many published books under their belt. In fact, some said that it is worse when they have already got published works because then they worry about losing their contract or having a flop after a success. What a revelation for me! But she said recently that if you see fans of your work as falling under the standard bell curve, then every shitty comment you get is proof that you have more fans. It was oddly inspiring.
Be popular enough to attract more crap!
Yeah, maybe that motto needs more work.