Courtesy is vital

It’s been a long time, you monster.

I say that so often that it’s become almost a tradition, hasn’t it? Right now, I am dealing with a monster, after a fashion. And as usually happens, most dramatically, the monster is possibly me.

Last week, I started writing again. It was exhilarating. I was reminded of how much I love doing it, and my arthritis (which is at an all-time worst) didn’t even slow me down. Except in the physical typing sense, but that didn’t matter!

Not depressed.

Not convinced that I would fail.

Not stuck in a quagmire of not writing.

I got brave. And with bravery comes stupidity. In the past, I have tried to get friends interested in talking writing together and helping each other succeed in our individual projects. It never ends well.

This time it looked like the worst ending of all.

My parents taught me to be courteous to others. To put them first. I have tried to encourage other writers by being positive and listening when they talk about their work. I have also tried to be honest in criticism. As far as I am concerned, this kind of attitude should be reciprocated. Returned in kind.

It doesn’t work like that. What really happened was that my positive encouragement was received and then the conversation ended. Every time. Right up until I, in frustrated, confused tears, asked why this was happening. I was honest, devastated, and straight up terrified that not only was I going to be rejected as a writer, but that I would lose a friend I highly respect and enjoy being around.

My friends, she really stepped up and showed me I was a fool for thinking like that. She let me cry. She listened to my feelings and made it clear that they matter. Then, when it was pretty clear I was going to get snubbed and ignored out of the writing conversation again, she opened a conversational window for me to have my say. She also bought a copy of Shifting Elements.

It still hurt that someone else went to sleep while I talked about my story and pointedly changed the subject a few times before that. I don’t want to go into a rant. The discourtesy just hurt. And after the emotional roller coaster I was on during all of this stuff, I spent today between anxiety headaches, panic attacks, and depression. And I got angry.

Getting angry and remembering how aforementioned wonderful friend supported me helped me make a decision. I’ve always had trouble with the business side of writing.

I’m not letting that stop me anymore.

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