Some have it, and some don't.
Ever get sick of hearing this? Sure, because it rings true--I know you.
But how does one really gauge if they "have" it or not? We grow up listening to the nice encouragement of our families, friends and sick strangers who don't know better. And for a time that's all we need, really; just to know that the people who love us, love what we do as well.
But what about when we're older? I got a nice, hot slap in the face today when I read my first review on Amazon. As you can guess, it wasn't promising. Lessee, how did it go? Oh, right:
"...$.50 would've been too much to have paid."
That shrank every piece of confidence in me. Why? Because this person put his hard-earned dollar into purchasing something from me that he ended up hating. That bothers me a LOT. My parents raised me to be a perfectionist (And then belittled me for it, but follow along.), and so I use that as my barometer for a lot of things. Realistically, if what you produce is not perfect, then it doesn't stand a good chance of competing with the best out there. And in this world of self-publishing, well, you have to step up your game: no two ways about it; you have to stand out in order to get a good following. This entire niche has opened the door for excellent writers who couldn't get a deal with idiot publishers too stupid to know they had gold on their hands before, to now begin self-publication, getting their wares out there, and the competition just got even higher. The entire market is going to reach a tipping point sooner or later, but right now in this jungle here, close to the ground where new authors like me are fighting for survival, well, a bad review can kill a career before it gets going.
I'm sad for the person who believed in and trusted me to give him a good product that he would enjoy, and well, I failed.
But, it's okay. It's not like I had tons of crap up on Amazon for download anyway. Or it's not like I put a whole huge amount of my life into this.
Is it the review making me this way? No. It was merely the review that confirmed what I've always suspected. (I guess you could say this is one of those hideously disfiguring disappointments I mentioned.) Even though I've never had confidence that I could write, I always wanted to. Always wanted to support myself through my art, no matter what it was. And, it stings a bit when you find that adoring public you had in your mind during the writing of that massive tome, wasn't all that impressed with said tome when the time came.
So, this will probably be my last post here. Thank-you to the few of you who decided to follow this dreck from my fingers. I hope I haven't disappointed you, either.
I'm going to have some chocolate and pretend I'm invisible.