How NOT to Be Jealous of Other Writers
I’m going to write something that makes me very uncomfortable to admit but it’s very true. I used to be very jealous of my husband, Brendan Hay, and his writing success. I couldn’t be happy for his success because I thought I would never succeed. He’s a TV writer, who has written on The Daily Show, Simpsons, Robot Chicken, etc. When we would go to parties, people would “ooh” and “aah” over what he worked on.
When they would ask me, I would mumble, “I’m a writer too.”
“What do you write?”
“Plays, some magazine articles.”
“Anything I would’ve read?”
That’s when my self-esteem would plummet. My plays were never published and my magazine articles were some pieces I had written online.
What I’m trying to say is that many times as a writer, or as a creative in general, you compare yourself to who is around you. Friends, writers you admire, famous authors, your own husband. It can get you down. If you let it.
The day that I started working on what I wanted to do, write for magazines and revise my young adult novel, is the day I stopped comparing myself to Brendan. The day that I stopped thinking, “Why am I not successful?” and started thinking instead, “What do I love to write?” that’s when things changed.
I pinpointed what I wanted. Wrote it down, then pursued it. Instead of being upset every time Brendan succeeded, I was happy for him.
It’s easy to feel bad about yourself as a writer. Every time a magazine pitch or a play of mine was rejected I used to sulk about it. I thought it was a sign that I shouldn’t be a writer. Now, I realize that I’ll get rejected many more times than I get accepted. That’s just part of being a writer.
Stop comparing yourself to Joe Smith or Susie Somebody. You are unique. You have your own voice. Your own things to say.
Stay tuned for my next blog post where I share what I do every year to set those writing/career goals and how I achieve them!
Until then, write on!