Yesterday was a happy day for me as a writer after I received an enthusiastic review of my new book “How to Write Short.”
But what if it had been a negative review, or a hostile review, or an insulting review? I would like to think that it still would have been a happy writing day. But how is that possible? It’s because I’ve finally reached a point where my self-worth as a writer is not determined by the reaction of others: not editors, not readers, not critics.
Of course, such reaction “influences” my feelings, but it does not “determine” them.
To apply some of the principles of cognitive psychology to the writing craft, here are some of our emotional responses that I now think are “cognitive distortions”:
- “An editor changed my story, proof that I cannot do good work on my own.”
- I’ve received a dozen rejections on this book manuscript; I must be a terrible writer.