I have the pleasure of sharing a guest post from author Clarissa Cartham, who shares her musings on...
REJECTION- A WRITER’S NIGHTMARE
by Clarissa Cartham
One of the first quotes I memorized as I was growing up was “No man is an island,” by John Donne. Essentially, it means that no one is self-sufficient and at some point one has to depend on others for survival.
However, I did come to realize that acceptance was just as much a crucial aspect of social survival, and perhaps now more prevalent than ever. In a digital world and a global network of community, people are tending to find their esteem in the number of friends they have on Facebook or followers on their Twitter and Instagram accounts. A high number indicates better popularity and hence the more satisfying feeling of acceptance.
In the world of writers, we generally get out boost of esteem from good reviews. However, it is the bad reviews which are often the topic of debate amongst writers and much has been delved and discussed on how one should handle this form of rejection.
When I first stepped foot in the publishing world, my first reviews were fortunately raving and this primed me up well and ready for the bad reviews that were to come. And sure enough, they did. I, of course had prepared myself for rejection by meditating on the belief that I could never please everyone. But what did shock me was the hurt that dug deep into my heart as if someone had physically stabbed me. I would read and re-read the bad review that haunted me for days. No longer did I care for the ten or so good reviews and neither did they compare to that sole one star review. That torment filled weeks, I sought therapy by reading through the many advices established authors had to say about bad reviews. But nothing pleased me more than discovering renowned and celebrity authors were also not spared from the scathing reviews of displeased readers. It only takes a quick search on Amazon to find bestsellers riddled with bad reviews such as these:
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
This is the worst book I've read in a long time. A complete waste of time. I am still trying to figure out what the point was. No moral compass, no reason for the games to exist, the so-called love interest wasn't interesting. A good basic idea for a book squandered, instead it is really only a computer game on paper. Thank goodness it only took me 4 days to read. This book is aimed at teenagers but due to its graphic nature and complete disregard for humanity, only adults should read this book, but few would if they knew what was in store for them.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by JK Rowlings
SO I SUPPOSE THE POINT OF THIS BOOK IS THAT PEOPLE WHO WEAR TURBANS ARE EVIL??? THERE ARE NO MINORITIES IN THE BOOK AND HARRY "THE WHITE BOY" POTTER SAVES THE DAY THIS BOOK IS RACIST AND SHOULD BE CONDEMNED BUT NO PEOPLE READ AND THE ONLY GIRL IN THE STORY IS PORTRAYED AS A NERDY BOOKWORM SIDEKICK BUTT KISSER REAL GOOD PORTRAYAL OF WOMEN WASNT IT WRITTEN BY A WOMAN??? THIS BOOK IS STUPID AND RACIST AND DONT BUY IT
And yes, it was capslocked in its entirety.
Of course today, I no longer sulk over that bad review. Instead I seek solace in the many good reviews I get. But above all, I have learned that reviews are merely opinions and are subjective to the reader’s experience. If, in case I did need an educated critique of my work, I forward my writings to an appropriate professional who can provide me a valid and literary assessment which would ultimately benefit my skills as a writer.
Finally, my publishing experience has not only made me more resilient but also more accepting of all kinds of readers. I believe that no person is a writer without his/her readers- readers who are like beacons, guiding us writers on our course as we navigate through the different stories we narrate.
by Clarissa Cartham
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
When Eric Tanner, an assassin, is targeted to be murdered by his former employer, he seeks refuge in the house of a blind woman, Anne Mullen.
Eric knows how to live in silence. He’s done it all his life. So when he discovers Anne is blind and living on her own, he thinks this would be his perfect hideout.
But then he makes the mistake of his life. He forms an attachment to her. And for a man in his profession, such attachments are a weakness. Now, he must do everything he can to protect Anne from the world he’s come from.
The bus drifted back slowly on its route, leaving an odor of its exhaust fumes behind it.
“Well, I would say I’d see you again, but I can’t.” Anne smiled.
“Excuse me,” he stammered.
“I was teasing,” she explained. “You know, I’m blind if you hadn’t noticed.”
“Right… yeah,” he said awkwardly.
She played with the head of her cane, supposedly feeling just as awkward.
“Well, goodbye then,” she said and turned around to walk away.
He floundered back and forth. Who was he kidding? He wasn’t ready to just let her walk away. It surprised him that even after fifteen years, she continued to make his heart pound like she did the first time he had seen her. He had thought he was well over her. After all, he had indulged in several relationships after her, no longer the shy teen afraid to ask a girl out for a date. He became widely known as a Don Juan, and he savored the popularity and gifts the women showered upon him. That was until someone handed him a gun and challenged him to shoot an empty can placed fifty paces away. It was then that he found a new obsession and every other passion paled before it. At least, he had thought it had. He stared after Anne helplessly.
“Wait,” he called out to her.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Clarissa Cartharn is the author of romance novels such as Captive, Red Collar, and the romance thriller/ suspense Jar series.
Once an English teacher, she embarked on a law profession before finally realizing it was writing she really wanted to pursue. After almost eight romance novels, each with eclectic themes ranging from a Cinderella re-telling to the barren war torn lands of Afghanistan, Clarissa is currently on a journey with her next novel titled The Yearning.
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