(This is mostly for new creators starting out. I figure vets already know this, or have their own differing opinions…)
Once you have created a work of art and sent it out into the world, regardless of the love, care & time you put into it, more than a couple people are going to hate and/or dismiss that art. No matter what. No matter what you do. And if/when you see this hate or dismissal, it will affect you, strongly or infinitesimally, depending on your abilities to deflect or absorb criticism.
But an important thing to remember when determining how much it’s going to affect you: EVERY work of art you love…a comic, a TV show, a movie, a book, a painting, a statue…any and all of the art you love? There are lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots of people out there that hate and/or dismiss it. There is no such thing as a work of art that has “universal appeal.” Nor should there be.
I love Animaniacs. Elizabethtown. Brain Donors. The A-Team. Impulse. Singin’ In The Rain. The Zero Effect. Gilmore Girls. Good Night & Good Luck. The Rocketeer. Never Not Funny. Sesame Street. Peanuts. Dawson’s Creek. A Good Year. West Wing. MST3K. Gotham Central. Dirty Jobs. Boomtown. Untold Tales Of Spider-Man. Bobs Burgers. Michael Clayton. My Brother My Brother & Me. Barry Ween.
The things I like are important to me, regardless of outside opinions. Other people like the things I like. Many people do not. And that’s ok. Just like it’s ok for you to create something that innumerable people will forever hate and/or dismiss. If this were a world where things were created only on the basis of EVERYONE liking them? We’d have nothing to watch or read or see. People like different things. If you’re a creator, and you feel strongly about an idea? If there’s passion in your belly to create it? Then it has worth. And it’s worth developing until you’ve completed it, or you feel it’s time to stop and move to something else.
This is not to say that every half-baked idea deserves to be leather-bound. There are steps to the creative process…being edited (or self-edited), pressure-testing premises, producing draft after draft after draft of something to the point of forgetting why you began something in the first place. But being afraid to generate a work of art because you’re afraid that someone, ANYone on the planet might not like it? That’s pointless.
Create things you believe in and have faith that they will find an audience, even if that audience is just you and maybe three people out there whose weird tastes match yours.
Someone hating or dismissing your work is an inevitability. How much that matters to you…is entirely up to you.