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This also got me thinking about talent and recognition.
I think one of the hardest thing for an artist to accept is that not everybody is going to like you. Some people will be indifferent, a few might even hate it, an even lesser number might hate with passion. This is reasonable, of course, nobody can be like a bar of gold and be liked by everybody.
So, I wonder and I have long wondered: how do you know if what you do is good? How do you know if you have talent or whatever you'd like to call that little something that makes a work more than just some words on a piece of paper (or a computer screen)?
It's a thought that scares me. Of course, first of all, you yourself need to have faith in your work, but I don't think that art is made to be hidden away. It is to be shared, to be amazed at, to be inspired by and it is made to be loved. The art you make you want to share, even if you are afraid of criticism. You want people to like what you do. I want my words to be read. I want them to be liked, and the idea that they might not be is frightening. The art I make is not fully mine and is not fully outside of myself, it is a transitional space between my own psyche and other people. To criticize my art is to criticize a part of me, so, yes, it hurts, even if I know it is necessary.
This is one of the things that scare me (and hence one of those I whine about) - how do I know if I am any good? You might win a contest, might get published, but does that mean you're good? Does that mean those stories will be remembered and read even after the author is gone?
The scariest thing is the answer, though. People might like my work or hate it, or, even worst, they might be indifferent. But truth is, I have to know that my words are good. They are not good because people like them, they are good because they are mine. They are unique, and nobody else could have written them. They have value in themselves, as any art does. Maybe they aren't good enough for others, but they should be good enough for me (not to say I shouldn't grow and improve, though).
Now the thing is, I have to believe in this.