A lot of the time, we writers are afraid to give ourselves enough credit. Or, you know, any credit.
We are afraid of seeming too pompous, I think. Like people will hear “I’m writing a book” as “I am an Author, unlike you, you poor peasant. I am writing the Most Epic Literary Work of All Time (It’s going to be a hit movie and don’t you forget it)™”. We’re worried that if we brag about the work we do it will sound excessively self-important and annoying.
It takes a lot to trust others with the fact that we’re writing anything at all. And, if someone likes our work, we writers tend to shrug it off with a modest “oh, it has a lot of polishing left to do” or “after a few edits, maybe it will be worth reading, (Laugh Out Loud emoji).” Someone says, “Wow, you wrote a book?” and we start talking about all of the ways it could be better and it’s not that big of a deal, but, you know, thanks.
First of all; it’s quite true that it’s not acceptable to be an arrogant douche of an egoist who won’t shut up about every little achievement, like the patented Author™ above. No one wants to be around a person like that and there is such a thing as being too self-confident. How many stories have the antagonist defeated by the fatal flaw of hubris?
However; what we sometimes forget while we’re busy modestly deflecting is that a certain level of pride is just fine.
Authors and fellow writers, it is right and correct for us to have self-confidence.
Arrogant, unjustified pride=no. Satisfaction and a sense of well-earned achievement=yes.
Being proud of the endless hours you spent fighting with the keyboard is not bragging. Feeling fulfilled when you think of the way you have grown as a writer is natural. It’s okay to think well of yourself for having the tenacity to write. What you did by shrugging off all of the rejections and plugging along anyway is amazing! It’s not hubris to say that, or to admit you’re proud of yourself for what you’ve accomplished.
In fact, if there’s any hope of you having the grit and toughness to continue to create you must have a certain amount of pride in what you can do. You must have that feeling of satisfaction, and own it.
And you know what? Right now, all over the world, there are writers pouring themselves into writing AN ENTIRE NOVEL in ONE MONTH. 50 K words in 30 days, y’all. Someone will tell you that’s amazing, and you know what? It is. Writing an entire novel is an incredible achievement. Doing it under a time crunch? Even more so. It is acceptable to say so. It is worth feeling proud of.
So right now, all over the world, practice saying something along these lines in return: “Thank you. It’s hard doing NaNoWriMo and I’m pretty proud of myself for attempting it/sticking with it.”
Go ahead and give yourself the credit. No one will think badly of you for taking it.