#IWSG Don't Let The Muggles Get You Down




Last evening, I saw a post by an author who was discouraged because of some in-laws who were scathing about her writing career. Among other nasty things, they told her she should give up because she'd never be successful. She was asking how she should respond to them.

Well, I had a few choice words I could have offered, including some suggestions which are anatomically impossible, but I told her to reply with just a Mona Lisa smile, like she was secretly amused but too polite to show it. Nothing is worse for those who want to discourage someone than seeing that person utterly unmoved by their sour predictions.

Judging from the number of posts I've seen along similar lines, this is a real problem for some writers. It's difficult enough as it is, even if a writer has someone in their life who's actively encouraging and supportive, let alone have to deal with a dream-killer.

Dream-killers are often people who never had the courage themselves to step up and reach for their own dreams. They listened to those little negative voices in their minds-- or to real-life negativity-- and accepted it as truth. When they see someone who does have the courage, it makes them feel like a failure. If you can succeed when they could not, it makes them ask unpleasant questions about themselves. Instead of asking those questions and possibly rectifying their own situation (it's never too late!), they put their energy into trying to hold others back. "You should not do what I could not."

"Don't let the muggles get you down," Ron says to Harry in The Prisoner of Azkaban. Later in the series, it's revealed that Aunt Petunia despised magic because she was jealous of her sister, Lily's, talents and interesting life. She convinced herself that magic was bad, and she was glad she didn't have it, and what's more, she was doing Harry a favor in trying to force him into being an ordinary muggle. She tried to crush the magic out of Harry instead of working to make her own life more magical.

Writers are the wizards in this scenario. We create worlds, and that's a sort of magic in of itself. There are going to be people you encounter who want to squash that magic right out of you. Pity them because they feel the need to do that, and go right on being a wizard. The best revenge is being happy.

¸¸•.¸¸.•´¯`• (¯`•♥•´¯)•´¯`•.¸¸.•.¸¸.


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7 comments:

  1. I do absolutely agree with this post, Lissa! I've had a few dream-killers in my life.

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  2. Thank you for the thoughtful post.

    It's one of the things I'm trying to prepare for before I publish my book. I know not everyone will like it, and I try not to focus on that thought.

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  3. That's awful that she has to deal with that. As you say, it's hard enough. She definitely needs to arm herself with gaggles of writer friends.

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  4. So, so true! We mustn't let the Muggles get us down.

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  5. What makes it even worse is when a loved one is trying to be well meaning in their discouragement. Just think! If they could teach a wanna be writer not to waste their time and instead use their time wisely ... you get the picture.

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  6. Beautifully said, I mean written! I have learned to just smile and keep moving forward. Engaging negative people causes you to get stuck. It is a lot easier said than done but it must be done.
    doreenmcgettigan.com

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