When we decided to discuss writing pet peeves I realized I had already posted something similar to this topic already, so I decided to discuss my own struggles with “Writer’s Envy!”
It is time to reveal the green eyed monster who resides behind my glasses.
Those writers who do not suffer from this twisted, psychological condition often have no idea of the daily struggles we face.
1.) The Envy of the New Idea- A fellow author announces a new and seemingly brilliant idea while you have spent hours staring blankly at a wall.
2.)The Envy of Other Authors and their compliments – This happens often at writing groups when someone’s work is regarded as almost perfect. For example, “Wow! This was so good I didn’t even make notes!” “I loved every word!” “I saw it and felt it and the dialogue was perfect!” While you sit with your pages, so marked up you can’t even read all the notes and someone wrote on the first page,”What is this about?”
3)The Envy of being able to edit your own work- You are so proud of the blood, sweat and tears you put into your own editing. Late nights with lot’s of coffee and style and grammar guides and you are finally finished. Then you give it to a friend to read and you find out you spelled your main character’s name differently on almost every page and you don’t have a single comma in the right place.
4.)The Envy of Understanding Technology – The other authors can all format their work to specific MAAPQXR standards and you can’t find the “insert page number,” button.
5.) The Envy of Being Published, Getting an Agent, Winning an Award – These are the most debilitating of all the “Writer’s Envy” conditions. It is especially horrible when you really, really admire the writer and their work. Granted, it’s easier when there is not love lost between the two of you. Then you can just wave a casual hand and say something snarky like, “Well, that’s a personal taste issue.” (And we’ve all done it! Admit it!)
Yet, when you really do think the work is great and the person who wrote it is wonderful, this can be a tough one to deal with.
As a fellow sufferer let me give to you the magic bullet for dealing with this…
Realize how lucky you are to know these wonderful writers and be thankful for them in your life. Because one day, you may be the one other’s envy and it’s a much worse predicament than being the envier!