Something I really struggle with sometimes is not meeting someone’s expectations.
It’s tough, being a writer and having that kind of insecurity. As a writer, you need a tough skin. A thick skin. You need to be able to handle criticism with grace. Not only handle it, but embrace it. Accept it. Apply it. Having someone on the outside critiquing your work can only make you better. Outsiders see what you can’t in your own work.
But no matter how tough your skin is, something will always get to you. When your boss picks a favorite article and it’s not yours. And the next week, it’s not yours. And it’s never yours. And you get your story back from the editor, and it’s torn apart. And you make changes, and it’s torn apart again, and again, until the words aren’t even yours anymore.
I do freelance work on a website called Elance. I’ve done a lot of different things on there–transcribing, proofreading, editing, beta reading. After you’ve finished a job, your client can rate you on a scale up to 5 stars, with different areas of skills, including quality, cost, schedule, expertise, professionalism, and response. Until today, out of 18 reviews I’ve gotten, I had 5 stars all across the board. Until today, when I got my 19th review–a 4.4.
There’s nothing wrong with a 4.4. A 4.4 out of 5.0 is still extremely good. But it’s not perfect. Now, when clients look at my bids for their work, they’ll see my average rating: 4.9.
I should be thrilled that out of 19 reviews I have a 4.9. That is an excellent score. But still, I can’t help but look at this blemish and see that to someone, I was not good enough. I did not meet their expectations.
I’m young. I’m not even 23 years old yet. I’m not supposed to be perfect. I’m fresh to this game. I’m new. But don’t let that fool you. I’m professional, I’m determined, I’m skilled, and I’m qualified. I will do a kick-ass job. I will.