I have a confession to make. You know how on social media, blogs and writers’ blogs in particular we’re often told that a success for one indie author is a success for us all? Well sometimes I find it really hard.
I find it hard to swallow that while my novel is languishing at the bottom of the Amazon rankings (well it feels like it anyway!), Mr or Ms Successful Indie Author has sold millions of copies of their novel and is doing very nicely thank you.
As a Christian, I know I need to take a step back from myself and not ‘covet my neighbour’s success in writing’! And I’m trying, really I am. But sometimes it’s a bitter pill to swallow when I read about so and so’s book doing fabulously while mine… well, isn’t.
See the thing is, like most if not all indie authors, I’ve put the hours in; I’ve worked hard to write and then publish a novel, done a blog tour, updated my blog regularly, tweeted, posted on Facebook etc etc.
I do realise it doesn’t necessarily work that way – I may have worked hard but perhaps my book just isn’t quite what people were interested in reading. But I feel I’m not quite at the point where I can truly be glad for others’ success. I’m trying hard but I’m not quite there yet.
I guess it’s a lot like life in general – for most of us there’s always gonna be people who’re more successful than us, have a better job, bigger house, more expensive car etc.
I find it helps me to remember what the Bible teaches – that ultimately these things don’t matter. What’s important is not how successful we are materially but how we live our lives.
When I consider this life and all the things (i.e. possessions) we hold dear, I often think of the ancient Egyptians and the way they painstakingly filled the tombs of their Pharaohs with their most treasured possessions, much of it still priceless today, in order that the Pharaoh would take it with him to the afterlife.
Because ultimately it’s the same with us: the success we have materially in this life and all our possessions aren’t going to go with us when we die. So what’s the use wasting precious time getting hung up on so and so succeeding more at something than me?
I hope that someday soon I’ll be able to read about a fellow author’s success without feeling a pang of envy, and be truly glad for them.
Am I the only one who struggles to be gracious when faced with others’ success being greater than mine?