Take it Personal But Don’t Take it to Heart

Writing is personal. Trusting your work with others is personal. I hate it when people try to downplay the relationships that writers and editors have by saying bullshit like, “Don’t take it personal.”

I do my best to be honest with other writers and reach out to them. We exchange work, do edits and beta reads for each other, and offer support when things go wrong. I love my circle of writer friends. They’re more like my writing family.

I’m not gonna lie, it hurts when someone tears into your work and points out every little mistake. But I find it’s easier with people you trust. I’d rather have my writing Yoda, or my friends Ty or Ian tell me I suck than pay some stranger to do it.

Paying for edits is something I’m not sold on. If you’re going to self-publish, sure. Do it. But I’m not entirely sold on self-publishing either.

Just because I rely on people I’ve come to know, all of which I actually met online haha, doesn’t mean it doesn’t hurt. But that pain is part of the job. When I get a friend’s work, I pay more careful attention the closer I am to the person. It’s my way of showing that I care. I’m not trying to hurt anyone, if anything I trust that they know I believe in them enough to really go through their manuscript with a sharp eye.

The last thing I’ll tell any writer is, “Don’t take it personal.” Because that’s bullshit. You pour your heart out into something and it’s never enough, there are always edits to be made. Take it personally. Brood a little. Get pissed off. And then use those emotions to dig in and make it better. That’s what I do at least.

Get angry, get upset, be a fucking human. But don’t take it to heart. Let all that frustration pass as you mend the tale. Don’t hold grudges or burn bridges. Learn to control your emotions. Let them out when you need, but then get over it. Grow up and move on. haha

When editing drives me nuts, I go in my backyard, pick up a bat, and knock balls out as far as I can. It feels great. And then I keep going. Keep at it. Plow away.

It’s work. It’s hard. That’s why there are a lot of people who say they are writers, but very few actually are.

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