Don’t settle for “B List”

My family and I are binge-watching 30 Rock right now before it leaves Netflix on October 1.  It was always a show I wanted to watch, I love Tracy Morgan and Tina Fey and I know the show is great. But it was one of those shows we just never got around to.

Like most of you, we don’t have a lot of time so we have to prioritize what we spend that precious time on. At least when it comes to entertainment. And there are so many good choices, but we can’t watch them all. So there is what we call the “B list”. As in, if we had more time, the show would be something that we would like to watch, but right now there are so many more “A list” shows. It doesn’t mean that the “B list” shows aren’t good, they are.  But with time being a limited resource, we often don’t get a chance to get them. There are always more new content and shows out there to compete, and before you know it, you are binge watching because it is now or never.

Switching gears for a second, I promise this will make sense in the end. One of my best bosses gave me some great advice. I didn’t want to add going to school to my list of family and work obligations. As a software engineer, I was already doing the work. Except I wasn’t a software engineer yet, even though I was doing the work. I was angry because that wasn’t fair. But he was quite honest with me and told me that this is because people will always look for the excuse to hold against you, so you need to make sure that you don’t give them any excuses. The fact that I didn’t have my degree was held against me, even though I did excellent work. There were people who did excellent work too, and they had that degree.

If this sounds bitter or cynical, please don’t take it that way. I’m not saying it’s because people are trying to be mean. It is just how life works.

There are so many good titles out there. I am constantly adding books to my TR pile. There are even a lot of cheap or free books that are good because authors are using a free sample to get you to like their work. I wish I had time to read them all. But I don’t. So I look for the reason to hold against a book so I don’t waste my time on something I won’t enjoy as much as possible. Bad cover? pass. Bad editing? Pass. Lots of reviews that say bad editing? Pass. Majority of reviews that say the book is ok or that the characters need to be developed? Pass.

All those things have nothing to do with your story. It might be the most interesting tale ever, that would sing to my heart and make me want to read it over and over again. But I will never see it.

Which is why I keep posting articles about the importance of quality, and also what drives me nuts about my own writing. But why do this if we are not going to present our best selves to the world? Why give them an excuse to hold against us?

Have a great day!




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