Stop apologizing for being a writer


Nietzsche said, “The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.”

Who’s gratitude was he referring to?

I write quite a few book reviews and it’s not uncommon for the author to comment on what I’ve said. Invariably they say thank you if the review is positive, and they apologize if I don’t like their book.

Is that the appropriate response?

Even if your book is poorly written but you’ve been honest and done your best isn’t that a remarkable feat?

What you’ve done is taken nothing and from your own wit and imagination created something. No one gave you a recipe, a blueprint or any type of plan beyond perhaps some suggestions, most of which you probably ignored.

How many other achievements in your life rank up there with writing a book? It’s not an accident of biology, the manifestation of greed, or the manipulation of public opinion. No one promised you unconditional love, wealth or fame and power.

And yet you’ve considered this project for years and labored for hundreds of hours on it.

You’re proud of your accomplishment and so you should be.

Why then do you thank someone when they offer a few crumbs of praise? Worse yet, why do you apologize when they’re critical of your accomplishment?

A more appropriate response from the reader or critic might be:

“Thank you for writing this book. I appreciate your commitment and the time you put into this worthy endeavor. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it (or the opposite) and here’s why.”

Your response should be, “You’re welcome,” or none at all.

Does it matter if people read your book? Does it matter if they liked it or didn’t like it? Does their opinion diminish the act of creativity?

I think it’s time to stop apologizing, time to stop being embarrassed for being a creator.

It’s time to look them in the eye and say, “I’m a writer and no my books don’t sell. Do you have a problem with that?”

Well, maybe it’s not time for that just yet.

Stay calm, be brave, watch for the signs



My new novels, FOREST – Love, Loss, Legend and The BIG PICTURE – A Camera, A Young Woman, An Uncompromising Ethic are available as e-books or paperbacks on Amazon and as e-books at

Read Reviews

Visit my publisher’s website for excerpts from, and buy links to my Eco-Fi series ECO-WARRIORS, that includes Spirit Bear, Eagleridge Bluffs, and Not Wonder More – Mad Maggie and the Mystery of the Ancients

More of my original photographs can be viewed, purchased, and shipped to you as GREETING CARDS; matted, laminated, mounted, framed, or canvas PRINTS; and POSTERS. Go to:

View my flickr photostream at

Or, My YouTube channel if you prefer photo videos accompanied by classical music

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