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How much of an asshole am I for ignoring feedback?

I am wracked by a mix of frustration and guilt when I don't take into account all the criticism I receive for one of my stories.  The frustration comes from either hating to admit it when the reader is right about something or simply being annoyed that I didn't catch a mistake in the first place.  The guilt comes from not incorporating every suggestion, either because I can't or don't want to.

It's probably a little bit silly to assume that just because one person had a comment, I have to implement it.  Everybody's going to react a little differently and something in one person's Hate list may be on another person's Love list.  And yet... I can't reconcile that.  Ignoring certain pieces of feedback just makes me feel uneasy.

It's like if somebody gave me three baskets of dirty laundry and told me not to wash the third one.  It will take so much will power to leave that third basket alone.  I'm already doing laundry, right?  So why not just do all three?  I know I don't have the time for that third load, and I'm not actually all that interested in washing anybody's clothes, but I don't want to leave any loose ends behind.  Open tasks bother me.

So it is with Bitter People Without Souls.  Some of the comments I've received are easy to address, and some are simply impractical.  At least one would require a full rewrite of the book.  I'm not going to do that.

But... should I?

I'm stuck in a logic loop now.  "There's work to be done, but I need to get the book out, but I can't if the work isn't done, but I don't have time to do the work until the book is done."

This could be partly fixed if I wasn't committed to having the book out next month.  And since I'm just a one-man operation, the only one pressuring me to get it out that soon is me.  In that respect, I could kowtow to my insecurities and keep revising.

...and then when does it stop?  When do I decide I've made everybody happy and there's no possible way my book could be made better?

What's worse is when the feedback is something I just plain disagree with. I've seen what happens when other people "disagree" with criticisms - they end up making things like The Room.  I don't want that to be my book.  So when I do hear something and I think, "Well, that's just wrong," I end up questioning myself and my sanity.  Am I being willfully incompetent by way of disregarding a comment?

I'd like to think the best option is to work on something until you like it, and then call it a day.  If that's the case, then I should've called this one a long time ago.  But we'll see.  Maybe another week will at least give me the peace of mind that I need.

All the Other Nonsense That Got Pushed Off the Main Page (Post Archive)

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