“Pain is inevitable, but misery is optional. We cannot avoid pain, but we can avoid joy.”

– Tim Hansel

So tell me, really, what do you want to do here?  You know as do I that the road to publication is a difficult one.  It’s not only filled with potholes but it has many washed out bridges and side streets endlessly under construction.

So let me ask you, the last time you took a road trip did the slow downs, detours and bad directions  keep you at home?  I’ll bet not.  Me either.

So when I get those little nips from critique partners who are usually making every effort to edit my voice right out of the picture, do I stop writing? No, I do not.

So by now, you must be asking yourself how I handle those particular “road bumps”.  They are nothing more than road bumps to me, because I don’t take them personally, that ‘s the first thing.

Secondly, I always treat the comments as constructive criticism, even when they’re obviously not.  You’re familiar with the side comments offered which will never help your confidence or your writing.  “You’ll never sell this.”  “No one is buying (insert appropriate category of writing here) right now.”   And my personal favorite, which comes on the heels of the criticizer editing out every last vestige of ‘voice’, ” that’s not really –or it can’t be– your voice.”

People who have your best interest at heart are loving and encouraging.  They do not criticize how you choose to spend your free time.  They are happy for you when you’re happy and supportive when you need it.

People who have your best interest at heart try to help you, no matter how long it takes you  to learn a new technique or to get something everyone else got in the first pass.

People who have your best interest at heart never tell you how a thing only works this way; they will help you learn new things and tell you, “this works for me.  Maybe you want to try it.”

So please, don’t let the people who refuse to support you make you avoid pursuing your dream.  Life is short, good strategies are usually simple;  avoid negativity wherever you encounter it.

Share the joy, write when you can.