Why Must We Be Miserable?

I ran into a situation yesterday that still has me slightly upset and confused. I am a member of several writers’ groups on Facebook, and yesterday someone posted a silly meme that compared the writing process with jogging and the desire to just give up and die (the post was taken down so I don’t have the exact wording, but that was the gist of the post).

I commented on the post, stating that I couldn’t relate since I cannot jog because of health reasons and that writing gives me joy. That’s when one of the group members outright attacked me, stating that if writing doesn’t make me miserable, then I must not know how to write or have ever written anything of length. I countered with the fact that I have written over 585,000 words of fan fiction, and I have completed my first novel. She continued to deride me and instead of escalating it further, I asked for a moderator to step in.

This was the first time I was directly attacked for my opinion on this, but I have seen this often within the writing community. Many of the outspoken writers will lament at how miserable they find their writing existence and how perhaps they just quit. How their writing is bad and no one appreciates them. Whenever someone actually tries to post something positive or claims that writing brings them joy, or is cathartic for them, I see many of the more miserable writers mocking and shaming them.

Now, I understand that misery loves company, but to outright attack someone and claim that just because writing brings them joy, that they must not be very good at writing is inexcusable. Especially when the accuser has often never even read any of the works that the person they are attacking has written. This attitude that you cannot be a good writer if you’re not constantly miserable just baffles me to no end.

If you’re a writer, have you come across this? Have you ever done this to someone or has someone ever done this to you? What do you think?

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