“I’ve been quoted as saying that ‘the cruellest thing you can do to an artist is tell them their work is perfect when it isn’t.’ It’s a policy that has gotten me thrown out of a lot of finger painting classes.” – Yahtzee Croshaw, Zero Punctuation; Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days
One of the biggest annoyances of being a writer who delves primarily in fanfiction, is that people have a tendency to blow smoke up my ass.
‘Oh, this story is so fantastic, I can’t wait to see what happens!’ They say in reference to my most boring work.
But on the flip side, when people have legitimate criticisms, it’s too easy to dismiss them and say they don’t get it. Or even worse, take personal offence.
One must remember that they are not their work. If someone criticizes your work, they’re not criticizing you, only what you created. But people so easily forget that. I, myself, only noticed recently that the early chapters of My Little Destiny were too over-padded. A lot of things could’ve been glossed over, compressed, or cut completely; but when people told me this, I got annoyed. Oh these peasants, not understanding the artistic narrative I’m trying to develop. Ba-ha-ha…
But they were right, and I should’ve been grateful, but I wasn’t; instead, I was dickish, and suggested they wanted Michael Bay to write the story. But this was my story, my baby, and I worked so hard on it! And that’s the problem: In my mind, I couldn’t separate myself from my work.
So it should come as no surprise that so many people treat artists like Precious Moments figurines; delicately and carefully out of fear they’ll break them, or by smashing them on the floor out of sheer disgust.
But the truth is, you shouldn’t hide the truth from them. If someone’s work is terrible, they deserve to know, because it’s the only way they can get better. You should try to nitpick, and search for errors and problems. And you should never, ever, use the word ‘perfect.’
Yes, I’m talking to you, Spike! You little suck up! For you see, it’s time, once again, to talk about My Little Pony. Continue reading