9:23 P.M.

Artists truly have it rough: the consistent nagging to create, dictated from a subconscious voice, struggling to balance life's oppression, the existential dread that one's artistic discipline may or may not succeed, plus many, many more circumstances. These stressors have a tendency to pile up, which can either be 1. Easily addressed by peers, family, or friends with an enthusiastic night out or similar fun activity or 2. Shelved into one's mind on a rickety bookcase, destined to creak, crack, and crumble. Each individual artist is or isn't easily susceptible to the latter, but we do not live in a perfect world. Shit happens. However, there is a specific, and horrid, alternative circumstance (let's call it 2a for sake of argument) that can rear its ugly head. That subsection: ignorance and aggression.

I believe every artist, regardless of discipline, must go through a 'coming of age' process. This can either result in a singular event where criticism is received unexpectedly and undesired or a series of consistent failures where no progress is made (think of the official definition of insanity). To tie into the reasoning of 2a, this abrasive intent or attitude is normally the effect of a botched coming of age; where one revolts against the criticizer due to an obscure self-righteous motive or sense of superiority. Thus, the artist continues along this path of resentment with taunts, aggression, and obscene remarks towards fellow artists, be they 'competition' or 'contrived'. In short: bullying. 

Now, my dear reader, please do not obscure this practice with constructive criticism. Typically, const. crit. is meant to leave a subjective impression from the reader, for the author; to formulate a pertinent argument, yet still leave the author with a takeaway and a smile. He/she can do whatever they please with said remarks; throw them in the trash, follow them to the T, one's to only speculate. An artist who seeks criticism must entertain all forms of criticism in good faith (in an organized, ethical workshop, presumably). The potentiality of a remark may gouge the flesh at first, thus arousing emotion, however, the scar that forms remains hardy and resilient to future battles. A story cannot become a classic if the author is the only one reading it.

In closing, I do implore you all to perform a simple Google search on creative writing workshop guidelines. Educate yourself with a perspective that may or may not have been previously introduced to you. Refresh. Indulge. Apply. There is many a harsh word to be said if one is to continue the act of bullying in their contemporary's work, expressed in both parties. For the belligerent: Why not allocate your mental fortitude to improve your art, and not scraping the paint off of others' masterpieces? The end result shall typically end in violence. For the artist: Do your best to ignore the sham of a bully, yet reinforce the vellum of emotion with an impervious card stock.