Why is Writing NOT about Pride?

Too many books are published out of pride not quality.

Authors are brilliant. When someone does not understand our story, it’s the readers problem, not ours. They just don’t get it.

In reality:

If they don’t get it, it’s the author’s fault.

If one person doesn’t understand what we’re trying to say, you can bet there are 100,000 other people who think the same way as our friends.

If we are going to reach those people, we need to be clear about what we want to say.

I once wrote a scene about a creature from another planet. I gave clear detail as to what the creature looked like, but it had fur and licked honey from its leather fingers. (Note I did not write paws.)

It was the fur and honey that confused my friends. They thought “grizzly bear.”

I was writing about an alien creature, which was not a grizzly bear and did not act like one. And yet, my friends both wrote in the margin of my manuscript, “Grizzly bears do not act like this.”

We had a good laugh when I explained to them they had miss understood.

Even though they were clearly wrong, I still rewrote the scene so no one else would make the same mistake.

My pride was not at issue—the clarity of the scene was.

The second rewrite was much better than the first.

Do not let your pride get in the way of a truly brilliant piece of writing. Listen to your beta readers.