Tuesday, November 15, 2011

"A no win game" or "How Chuck Palahniuk saved my sanity"

So I have a problem. I am the person who takes everything to heart. Squared. And I let anything even mildly negative eat away at me and drive me basically...bat shit.

So when I wrote Big Bad, I knew it would probably be a mixed bag reviews as far as paranormals went. There are folks who read paranormals who want their 'worlds' to be a specific way. Especially wolves. They want packs to be very much like packs in nature--something I learned when I wrote Base Nature and someone told me my werewolves were not behaving like werewolves. Which both startled me and sort of cracked me up.

Bottom line is: I knew it would fly with some and sink with others. I knew it and I was okay with it. I thought.

It's very easy to be brave before something happens, don't you think? It's entirely different to keep your shit together when it actually happens.

So it happened--My first book that came out of the gate at a mere 3 on Goodreads. Yes, 3 is "I liked it". To me that means "You are mediocre" (please keep in mind these are my hangups. Do not read anything at all into it regarding anyone else's writing. This is really just about my own mangled mind fuckery.)

So not to put too fine of a point on it. I freaked out.

Then a review came in from someone who didn't finish the book and didn't like it. At all. And I freaked out some more. Because to me. "I don't like it" means "I don't like you."

Which is stupid. But hey, I'm being honest here.

Then I saw the video above. (specifically 4:34) And I literally felt my entire body exhale. I relaxed. It was like someone had taken a piano off my back and said, hey, take a deep breath.

It is much easier for my type AAAAAAA personality to say: she didn't get it than she didn't like it. Because not liking it=not liking me (not really...just to yours truly). But not getting it=didn't work for her. And that is something my mind 'gets'.

So if you tend to take things to heart and let them eat at you and are a bit of a nutter like moi...I suggest you watch this whole thing. Not just minute 4:34. It's worth it. Totally.

And in the interim the book has picked up 5 stars and 4 stars and yes, more 3 stars. And I think some even lower. Raves and rips, basically. And so far I haven't exploded.

Good stuff ;)



  1. I've had the same issue with my books on Goodreads as well Sommer and I take it super personally too. All we can do is take a deep breath and write another. That's the best way to get over it that I've found.

  2. Most of my books have gone to Goodreads only to die in bloody tatters. The amusing thing is my lowest rated book, a FREEBIE story with a wealth of sincerely hateful one star reviews, got me in the door with an editor. I guess irony really is the spice of life.

    BTW, I recently bought a print copy of Big Bad. How hot is that cover? *eyebrow wiggle* I can hardly wait to read it. :)

    Off to watch your Chuck video now. This looks good. I'm always looking for tips to achieve (and maintain) writerly zen.

  3. I agree, totally, Elise. Writing something new often helps me not wig out utterly :)

    You are so sweet, Cora! Eep @_@ i hope you like it. I know you like me. So if you don't like it...don't tell me! LOL. (Willsin Rowe did that cover. Isn't is super?)

    My freebie is one of the lowest rated too. Maybe free stuff just pisses people off...? *snort*

    I hope Chuck--my writing Yoda--helped your Zen. :)



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