I’ve been raised to be a friendly girl.
I was nice to animals. I recycled things. I always tried to smile at others. I was the kind of person people turned to when they had problems. I listened, gave others a shoulder to lean on to, and I was the first to come up with solutions or some good advice. I tried to make the world a better place whenever I could. And I cried when people were mean to me.
When I was still querying agencies and publishers with my first book and was rejected almost 150 times, a friend said to me, “But don’t you change when fame knocks on your door one day and the millions start rolling in, do you hear me? Promise that you’re not going to be one of those arrogant star bitches who don’t remember their friends anymore.”
She laughed when she said that, and I laughed too. The thing about fame? It was a joke…
Neither of us could know that over the next three years more than 100,000 people would read my books.
I don’t call myself famous. The right term is successful at what I do. I love to write, made my passion to my business, and achieved to reach out to a wonderful crowd of book lovers. My bank account looks a little nicer today than three years ago, and I get fan mail every day. But did that change me?
I’m still nice to animals, I recycle things, and I smile a lot at others. I still know all my good friends and have a shoulder for them to lean on if they need one. And I still try to make the world a better place whenever I get a chance to.
So, no…success (or fame) didn’t change me. Except for one thing. I’m not crying anymore. People can try to hurt me with their words now, but all I think is So What?
Some don’t like my books and rip them to pieces in public reviews? So what? 100,000 others love them.
People say I’m not really working because all I ever do is laze around and write a few lines every day? So what? They don’t really know me and never will. I might not have to be at an office or a construction site at seven in the morning, but I do get up before 6 most days and start writing before others even have breakfast. My workdays usually end at 10 p.m.
I can’t finish my next book within the demanded 2 months? So what? My true fans will wait a year for my next book and still be happy.
Some people can’t wait to rant about my being arrogant because I just didn’t say hello to them a moment ago? If that’s what they think… I don’t care. The truth is, I probably had other, more important things on my mind at that moment and actually didn’t see them. If they take it for arrogance, so what? I don’t have to explain myself to anyone.
And that is really the one great thing about being successful in your life. You decide who you want to be—the friendly girl or the star bitch—but you also gain a whole lot of self-esteem. You obtain the privilege of So what. After everything is said and done, it’ll make you a happier person.