Guess this post will negate the Thankful Thursday post I’ll be doing later today….
I’ve decided I might not be cut out for networking sites like The Bleacher Report. I wrote a piece a few weeks ago about how intimidated the site makes me. It’s almost like a magazine or newspaper made for sports blogs. And it’s full of pro sports bloggers writing about sports that are way over my head. There is a whole editing system and different levels (I’ve moved up to being a scribe now!). And if the piece is good, it makes it to the “front page.” It can be a bit overwhelming to a new sports blogger.
The first weeks were rough but lately, I really feel like I’m making my own little niche in there and I’m quite happy in that little niche. I make it to the front page with almost every piece I put on there (except the ones I accidentally uploaded…oops!). I’ve gained a core group of fans and friends and life is good.
But then…. I got this and it made me question the whole thing all over again.
“Just a few grammatical hiccups, and also something that I find quite often whilst editing: an author not having faith in his or her abilities. When you say something to the effect of “here’s what I’m going to do,” or “Hope is a tricky one,” instead of just coming out firing with your assertions, it weakens the piece. You have a great message here. Take a cue from your inspiration, Pres. Obama, and use that strength without couching it. Let the punches roll, and your work will be that much stronger for it.”
That’s worse then when I was told the KU Rock, Chalk Jayhawk piece was “a bit Wikipedia!”
First of all, are you freaking serious? Clearly this guy is not a Stiletto Sports follower because if I “let the punches roll” anymore than I do well, I’d be scared. In the last four months I’ve compared football to Legally Blonde, the Phillies to Snow White, created an official rulebook on how to pick teams without ever looking at a stat, and said my top sports moment of 2008 was Dancing with the Stars. Oh yeah, I really hold myself and my thoughts back, don’t I?
Now, don’t get me wrong because I love having an editing system over there to help fine tune my work. And the guy did change my headline for me to make it stand out–which I was having trouble with. And I like constructive and helpful critiques. But I don’t deal well with vague comments (i.e. the Wikipedia one. Guy didn’t explain his point or over suggestions) or personal “attacks.” I am pretty sensitive to stuff. I don’t have hard outer shell. I’m pretty much a pink bubble of goo. And I think before I give criticisms. I try to find a way to give them in a way that would be helpful and not hurtful.
The sucky part (besides those icky words) is that he actually really liked the piece and had nice things to say:
“You have a great voice and a great message, as I said, so don’t muffle it. Other than that little piece of advice, you’ve really created something nice here. Love it.”
But I was so taken aback and genuinely offended by the “not having faith” part that I barely read the rest. I think that was a pretty bold statement for someone to assume just because he edits a lot of blogs. Whoop di freaking doo.
I am so indescribably proud of myself right now that there are no words for it. In the last four months I’ve turned my life totally upside down and am starting all over. I’ve learned how to design my own website, run multiple websites, advertise, promote, network. None of which I knew a thing about four months ago. And I think I’ve been really successful so far. Maybe not monetarily successful…but successful in growing a great fan base and being discovered–and liked–by some pretty important people.
I have so much faith in my abilities and my talent as a writer and I found it beyond hurtful to hear someone question that. I spent the last eight years since college too scared to write because I didn’t think I was good enough. I finally gained the courage to rediscover my voice and my talent and put it out there for everyone. And then I hear something like that.
You know what, buddy, fuck you. Seriously.
Here’s what you should have said, ass.
“Just a few grammatical hiccups! You have a great voice and a great message! I’ve edited a lot of blogs and noticed that when you say something to the effect of “here’s what I’m going to do,” or “Hope is a tricky one,” instead of just coming out firing with your assertions, it can weaken the piece. Just say it without prefacing it and and your work will be that much stronger for it. You’ve really created something nice here. Love it.”
Ah well. At least it’s toughening me up. I didn’t even cry this time. And I know if I want to make it in this writing world I need a tough skin. I write as I speak.
Thoughts? Do I really suck that bad?