I’ve been drafting this particular post for a long time. It still seems too touchy-feely.

Writers have BIG egos.

Even more than that, writers need┬ábig egos. Without a bit of ego, a writer is someone looking at a blank page, thinking, Why would anyone read something I wrote. I wonder what’s on TV.

However, these big egos can make it difficult for writers to work with other writers, to allow others to critique their work, to not feel like they’re in a competition. Sadly, this kind of negative ego will only turn back on those who put it out. I’ve seen promising writers learn bad habits as they refused to listen to good advice, “knowing” that they were the better writer.

Don’t let it happen to you.

It’s important to weigh the advice of others and not take it as gospel, but it is also important to listen to other people, to allow yourself to be taught. Sometimes, all it means is keeping your mouth shut and taking time to think about something.

2 thoughts on “Cooperation

  1. TheOthers1

    This is good advice. My initial response to criticism of my work is to get upset or depressed. I usually have to take a deep breath and really look at what they said. That’s hard when you’re putting yourself out there to accept critique.

  2. D. Moonfire

    I suffered early in my programming career that I was The Greatest Thing To Happen Since The Bit™. Fortunately, someone came along with a big ass 2×4 and repeatedly beat me over the head and shoulders until my broken fingers managed to hold up the “I surrender” flag. It was a brutal, painful experience, but one that also carried over to my writing.

    I believe in teams, groups. When one person succeeds, everyone does. For the writing group, that is much the same thing. I’m happy when anyone gets published, written about, etc, simply because we might have all contributed to that and it was a group effort. I suck as an individual writer, but I’m a long stronger with people to bounce ideas (even if they are occasionally cruel).

    As for taking harsh critiques: one is opinion, two is a trend, three means it needs to be fixed.


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