Being paid to do what you love is so hard to do. So when I got my first professional contract as a medical writer, frankly, I was stunned to my underwear. The reason for my astonishment was not because I didn’t think I had the skills to write. It was because an editor perched high upon an ivory tower thought the same thing. Now that is not to say that I didn’t receive praise from family members and friends (here comes the conjunction) BUT they don’t count…WAIT before you think I have become an ingrate. Remember this…family and friends will lull you into a false sense of stardom, having you believe that you are the illegitimate child of Stephen King. This well meaning, but corruptible, praise is the equivalent of a mother’s love for a hideous child. And painful, truthful opinions are what you need when writing. Lots and lot of painful opinions that rip through your ego and make you bleed through your edits over and over again. It is through that professional punishment you find the way to success.