Other people’s success is not my failure.

Other people’s success is not my failure.

Other people’s success is not my failure.

As I continue to field rejections for my short story submissions, I am hiding from Facebook at all costs. Why, you may ask? Well, the Facebook newsfeed algorithms are a funny thing. I can go for months only seeing posts from the same 20 people out of the over 200 with whom I am Facebook friends. But see, Facebook starts to pick up on things I’m doing in my life. Like when I was pregnant and it decided I wanted to read all the stories about miscarriages and women dying after giving birth. Now, it’s picking up that I’m writing more. So while I’m struggling to figure out what the hell it is I’m actually doing, Facebook decides to show me that a distant-ish colleague, who is my age and in my same field (not related to speculative fiction whatsoever), has published a sci-fi book. The first in a series, actually. Which is AMAZING. It’s incredible. But it makes me feel like an idiot.

So I’m trying to tell myself over and over again that other people’s success is not my failure.

I’ve always been the type of person who needs to have my own “thing.” If someone else is doing something, I take that to mean there is no room for me. My sister is the singer so I decided at the ripe old age of 8 that music wasn’t going to be my “thing.” In fifth grade, my class was tie-dying t-shirts for science camp. The teacher gave us instructions on how to tie them with rubber bands to make a cool design, and I realized everyone’s t-shirt was going to look the same “thing.” So I started making up ways to twist and tie the rubber bands so my shirt would look different. As a teenager, I ignored the Harry Potter books for several years because they were the “thing” everyone else was reading, so naturally, I couldn’t. And now, that same annoying part of my brain is trying to tell me that if someone else my age and in my current field is writing spec fic, then I shouldn’t. That part of my brain is trying really hard to tell me that I need to go find a new “thing.” But here’s the kicker this time, my dudes: I don’t want to.

Because other people’s success is not my failure. Right?

Now my brain is in an epic battle royale between the part that is saying “this thing has been done, go find a new thing” and “you have something to offer here, don’t give up.”

WHO WILL PREVAIL??

(It would really, really help if someone would throw me a damn bone and publish a story. Kthxbye)