You Are Not Your Book

by | 25 January 2019 | Writing | 12 comments

As writers, we spend hours and hours pouring ourselves into our books. All that time spent working on your characters, your world, your plot. The planning, the writing, the editing. There’s so much of the author in every book on your shelf.


But as writers, we need to remember that our books are not ourselves.


When you get fan-feedback from your book, praise reviews, people getting excited over snippets and concepts, it’s pretty exciting for you, and that’s as it should be.

But we need to be careful. While I have thrown myself so deeply into my novel…it is not me. Even as it succeeds and flourishes. That’s not me.


While it might sound strange to be guarded about your excitement, there’s a good reason. If you’ve written very much at all, you’ll probably have gotten some feedback on it. And if you’ve had much feedback, you’ll probably know that it’s not all excitement and roses.

Some feedback is negative. It shows you the flaws of your book, the parts you need to work on more, the little elements you missed, etc.

If a literary agent or a publisher rejects your story, or if an editor says it needs more work, or if a reader leaves a negative review on your published novel, that’s not on you. If someone says your book was rubbish, it doesn’t mean that you’re rubbish.


You are not the success or failure of your book.


If you put your worth in the success of your book, you’ll never be satisfied. There’s never a point in the bookish journey where you’ve ‘reached it’. Your book can become an international bestseller, but it won’t be ‘enough’ if you’re putting your self worth on your book.

Rejection letters can hurt. Negative reviews can hurt. But they can’t change who you are unless you let them.


It’s a choice you have to consciously make. The choice to be you, not your work. What people think and say about your book should change the way you act and the way you live.

Whether you’re going through the good times or the hard times, you aren’t your book. You are you. Your book can come from your heart, but it is not your heart. You are beautiful and unique and loved by the Creator of the universe, and if that’s not encouraging enough to put a smile on your face, I don’t know what is. 😊


Just a short, rambling post today, but let’s chat! Are you going through a good time or a hard time at the moment? How has life been treating you lately?

Jane Maree

Jane Maree

Jane Maree is an Australian writer, adventurer at heart, beloved daughter of the King of Kings, and believer in at least six impossible things before breakfast. Raised on fairy tales, scraped knees, and makeshift swords, she has yet to outgrow any of them. In her day job, Jane teaches music and freelances as an editor, but by night she crafts daring stories of broken heroes overcoming extraordinary odds.


  1. J.A.Penrose

    This is really encouraging, and it doesn’t just go for books! So many people feel that their value comes from what they create or do, and negative feedback can hurt if you don’t look at it right.

    Thanks so much, Jane!

    • Jane Maree

      Absolutely! It goes for every part of life, doesn’t it. 😉

      Thank YOU for being an amazing encouragement to me for all these years. ❤

  2. Kendra Lynne @ The Wanderling

    This is such a great reminder for anybody who creates and puts their art out there. People will either love it or hate it and it can be so difficult to remember that that doesn’t define the artist.

    Thank you, Jane! <33

    Life has been interesting! We've been home most of the time (its winter of course where we are) and tea, books, and movies are the best companions in cold weather. 😉 How's life in your neck of the woods?

    Btw your Instagram looks beautiful! <3

    • Jane Maree

      It’s so easy to take it personally when our work is loved or hated, but it’s so important not to! Your value is in Christ, and he sees that you are priceless. 💕

      Tea, books, and movies sounds like so much fun!! Can I come visit you guys??? 😍

      It’s been a lot hotter here, but that doesn’t stop me from drinking tea and reading books. 😅 I’ve been a little more relaxed so far this month, as far as writing and editing goes, because the end of last year was hectic. I’m getting back into the swing of things again now and it’s been really good.

      Thank you! 😊

  3. MiddleEarthMusician

    Ooh, yes; this is a great reminder, Jane. <333 Thanks so much for sharing!
    Life has been good for me of late. How has it been for you? 🙂

    • Jane Maree

      Aw, you’re welcome! I need the reminder just as much as everyone else. 😛

      That’s great to hear! ❤ It’s been pretty good from my end too. Recovering from the busyness of November-December 2018, and slowly getting into a new rhythm again. 😄

  4. Evelyn Kelly

    What an important reminder! I was just talking about this the other day with a friend.
    Thanks for a great article! 🙂

    • Jane Maree

      Wow, that’s so cool that we overlapped like that! I love it when that happens. 😃

  5. Olivia G

    Thank you for this beautiful reminder Jane! It’s so encouraging, and I really needed to hear this today. <3

    • Jane Maree

      You’re so, so welcome! God’s got you, Olivia. 💕

  6. Lilian

    This was super encouraging, Jane! Thank you!

    • Jane Maree

      You’re welcome! It’s something that’s been on my mind a little and I just wanted to share it with you guys. I’m so glad it encouraged you! 😊

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