Don’t Let Hurt Feelings Kill Creativity

Image result for broken heart in hands

Criticism can be so hard for a creator to take. When I’m honest with myself, my confidence can be so fragile. When it comes to my work, I get pretty self- conscious. This was especially so when I was younger, specifically in high school.

I was replying to a comment when I remembered what the start of this novel was like. I started the idea for this in 2010, the start of my senior year in high school. I would write out scenes, draw character design and have composition notebooks filled with ideas. I was so eager to flesh out my novel. One day, I shared a scene with an acquaintance, since she was curious about what I was always writing. I was so excited to show her everything to do with the novel. She read over a scene while I rambled on about the different aspects of it. She smiled at me when she handed back my notebook and said “It seems cool, but I don’t really get it”. I very simple statement, right? No malice or ill intent in sight. But that’s not how I took it. I got really upset and assumed that my book really wasn’t as good as I thought it was. For maybe two years or so, I never really looked into writing anything that wasn’t fanfiction (A pastime that was actually a lot of fun and still is), or for homework.

I let something that wasn’t even that serious get the better of me. Taking criticism is essential to working through a novel. Thankfully, I was able to really gather myself once I took a creative writing class. That professor is someone who change my mindset for the better. Now, I look forward to people to critique my writing. For the class, I had to write a short story. I was so excited to get feedback from both my teacher and my classmates. It helped mold my story into what I really wanted it to be.

It’s so easy to get down in the dumps when you’re given criticism. But, it’s also easy to take that as a positive afterward. Instead of seeing criticism as someone trying to hurt your feelings, see it as someone who sees the potential in your work and wants to see it blossom. More often than not the latter is true. When I looked over the notebook last night, I saw that my story at that time really didn’t make any sense. She saw a cool plot, with nothing to carry it. I let my hurt feeling stunt my growth as a writer. Thankfully, I was able to pull myself out of that way of thinking. This roadblock was something that was hard, but amazing to overcome.

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