One my desk is a book I have written; I am drawing cartoons for it, and formalizing the details to publish the book later this year. And, some days I just look at the book and don’t work on it, because I worry that someone might not like it.
Don’t pay attention to the haters
And if only one person didn’t like my book, I would tend to focus on the one hater.
I don’t know why a negative comment gets stuck in our brain when there are comments that are positive and encouraging.
It is as though the negative comment confirms in our mind what we truly believe. The lies we believe. The lie that what we create is not good. The lie that says if our art is not good than we are not good. Who are you trying to kid anyhow? Pretending to be a writer. Pretending to be an artist. Go back to bed. Sell your easel, throw away your pencil. Quit writing and clean those seven litter boxes.
One lie has the power to tarnish a thousand truths.
― Al David
The voice from the depth of the earth that mocks and taunts. The lying voice that wants us to keep our truth inside our head, the words hidden, locked away, and our paintings in the tubes and in the recesses of our brains, our canvasses blank.
The voice of Resistance. The Resistance that Steven Pressfield talks about in his book, The War of Art.
My cat, Pooh Hodges, recently interviewed Steven Pressfield for his column, Cat Talk, on The Write Practice. Pooh wanted to know how Mr. Pressfield deals with negative reviews. This was Pressfield’s advice:
A professional writer (or actor or director or athlete) does not read reviews. I don’t give a damn what anybody thinks of me. Hemingway himself once said you can’t read reviews because “if you believe them when they tell you you’re great, you have to believe them when they tell you you’re a bum.
― Steven Pressfield, in an interview with Pooh Hodges, for Cat Talk on The Write Practice
I think I need to write on the inside of my arm with a magic marker, “I don’t give a damn what anybody thinks of me.”
It really is time to stop listening to the lies. It is time to stop giving the lies power. It is time to be bold like Steven Pressfield and Mozart.
I pay no attention whatever to anybody’s praise or blame. I simply follow my own feelings.
― Amadeus Mozart
Stop listening to the lies
Will you be bold with me?
Will you take a pledge to stop listening to lies? Will you ignore the haters? Will you ignore the one-star reviews and any negative comments?
Actually, don’t read any reviews.
Trust your own feelings.
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p.s. Here is a great article on how to deal with bad reviews. 10 Ways for Authors to Handle Bad Reviews