Sunday, December 11, 2011

Crabs in a bucket

Competition. Yuck. I hate being competitive. I know a little healthy motivation is good—but why the meanness, spitefulness, and negative criticism?

Remember the phrase “crabs in a bucket?” If you put one crab into a bucket it will easily be able to crawl out. However, if you put in a whole group of crabs, they will constantly pull one another down so that no one can get to the top.

Why do we often pull down others if they begin to succeed? I’ve been thinking about how this applies to the writing community. So often I see writers tear down successful authors. I always think to myself how strange it is. If I don’t like a novel, I might not read it, but I wouldn’t bash it. We don’t all have the same taste. We don’t all like the same genres—but that’s exactly why there are so many to choose from!

Also, why do people criticize novels that were not written for them? If you’re a guy who hates fantasy, romance, and mushy dialogue, then you probably shouldn't read that kind of novel. You’ll never give that book a fair chance, because, well, you hate that genre to begin with.

Most of my experiences as a writer have been so positive. But I have had those few mind-boggling moments when people give disapproval that has more to do with my choice of genre than my writing.

As authors we should try and help each other. We all know how hard it is to write, edit, and perfect a manuscript. And as friends and family shouldn’t we try to uplift and not tear each other down?

I’m going to try my hardest to work on this, because when it comes down to it, I just don’t want to be a crabby person ;).


  1. Agreed. Someone else's success merely means there's more money in the publishing house (maybe to take a chance on new authors!) and more readers buying and reading books!
    Love your point about not bashing books that weren't written for you (or which you haven't even read) - is why the whole Twi-bashing viciousness makes me very uncomfortable.

  2. Joanne,

    I couldn't agree more, it's quite frustrating when I hear a guy say how much he hates Twilight. Or when anyone who hasn't read the books declares it a terrible series. It's so strange to me. We'll have to help others realize what they are saying!

  3. You are awesome! Your blog looks great!