Jealousy is an ugly thing, and I try not to let it get to me. ai prefer the idea of a friendly rivalry. "Oh, you sold a short story? Well, watch this!"
Seriously. In the worlds of one 9f the best writers I know, and he likely got the words from someone else, "the rising tide lifts all boats."
No, I don't get jealous, or if I do, I crush that negativity down as hard as I can. I think that's pretty easy for me because, after over twenty-five years in this business, I'm still pleasantly surprised by every success I have.
That doesn't mean I haven't run across the green-eyed monster a few times. I have. Of course, I'd like to have the successes of a few of my peers. I've never won Hugo, or a Stoker award, and nobody particularly cares if I'm ever the guest of honor at a convention, It just doesn't happen. I get that. I'm comfortably midlist. I'd like to be the next New York Times bestselling author, but if it doesn't happen, it simply isn't meant to be.
Put another way, I'd rather celebrate the victories for me and my friends alike. I have sev3eral friends who started after me and have had more commercial success. It is what it is. I haven't had a movie made on my work, but I've been optioned a few times and so far Netflix isn't knocking at the door and HBO would rather do a sequel to Game of Thrones than come over and give me a fat check for Seven Forges. To a very real extent, it's the luck of the draw. Nothing of mine has stuck to the proverbial wall yet, but you never know. In the meantime, rather than fret over those things. I'll worry about whether or to I can manage the rent this month. It's a more pressing need if you see my point.
I might get jealous, but it's nev4r for long. It's not pie. I don't have to get less because someone else gets more. Want to know another thing? The same is true in reverse.. I've run across more than a few people who thought that my success was somehow responsible for their lack of the same. I normally don't give them the time of day. On a few occasions, I've pulled them aside and we've had a chat.
One of my favorites was a woman who could not understand why I wasn't getting her work as an editor. We'd literally met n hour earlier and apparently, she felt I should have been telling ev4ryone about her editorial services. Listen, while I will often help a person out by recommending them, I didn't know her at all. I had never dealt with her I felt no obligation to sing the gospels of her editorial services to anyone. I still don't. Why would I then tell people how amazing her skills are?
Sorry, but it doesn't work that way. Maybe she thought that was how networking is handled, but, no, thanks. Not for me.
does that sound selfish? it isn't meant to. but why would I trust the skills of someone I don't know? Why would I risk giving someone bad advice that way? I'm all for helping others mv4e forward with their careers, but not because it is demanded of me.
That's like trying to demand a quote from Stephen King for mt next book. Good heavens, why would he? We've literally never met.