QUESTION: When I tell people my first novel is being published by an epublisher, they make fun of me and ask me why I'm not with a "real" publisher. Ouch! This really hurts me. How can I handle the put downs?
I've been at this business for over thirty years, and I am an ebook pioneer so I've seen it all. The first thing you need to know is that whatever you write whatever publisher you choose whatever media you write for will have someone making fun of you.
From your fellow writers and publishing professionals, you will face sneers and contempt. If you are e-published, if you are self-published, if you write for Kensington rather than Pocket, or paperback rather than hardcover, or if you write romance or erotica or mystery or science fiction or any other sort of fiction, you are looked down upon by someone, and that person has no trouble telling you so.
From the real world of family, friends, readers, and strangers, people will sneer at you for all the above reasons as well as a few more. Most people think Kobe Bryant works hard for his craft and has a natural born skill, but writers just put words on paper and anyone can do it.
Over half the people who learn you are a writer tell you that they are going to write a book someday, and they think it will be published instantly. People believe that most celebrities actually write their own books, and, therefore, if that idiot can write a book, anyone can.
The most important thing to know is that THEY don't define you. YOU define you.
I've discovered that my enthusiasm can win over those blank stares. The trick is to believe in what you are doing and who you are. If you give those people with sneers or blank stares the power to define who you are, then you've lost, and you are nothing.
Instead, believe in yourself and what you are doing. Writing is one of the hardest jobs in the world, and if you succeed, then you are a success. Glow with it, and no one can belittle you.