If You Want to Be a Writer, Grow a Thick Skin
When someone says someone less than stellar about your work, don’t fret. Take it as a compliment that someone read your work and thought enough of it to analyze it critically. A critic’s opinion isn’t a reflection of your soul. Don’t take their words personally. Most of them mean well.
You’ll hear all kinds of comments—some based in fact (notes you’ll jot down for later reference), some based in nothing but malice (notes you’ll file away to bring up right before you go to bed, because of course you will). You need to take them as they come, keep the ones that matter, and let the rest go. That’s all there is to it.
I’ve seen students break down in fiction workshops because someone made a good point about their work. Some students burst into tears. Some become hysterical. It’s difficult to watch. I’m not saying I’ve never been upset in a workshop—believe me, I have. My point is that you should view critiques as opportunities to improve, not indicators of your self-worth.
If you want to be a writer, grow a thick skin. Otherwise, my darlings, you might not make it. And I’m rooting for each and every one of you to make it.