In my new novel, there's a man who tries to crush Marcie's dreams. Not her husband Shawn, he is a sweetheart and very supportive of his wife, when he remembers LOL. But since I finished House of Diamonds and sent it off, I have been thinking of all the ways one's dreams can be crushed. Who knows why I'm taking the negative end of it, maybe I'm just tired at the end of the day.
There are a few effective dream-crushing statements I've run across. For instance, I remember a blogger who had run out of agents to query and decided to go the self-publishing route. This was a year or so ago. When she wrote a post about it, people commented: "No, don't give up!!" Which is a back-handed way to say "You are making a mistake!" Well, some of those people may still be querying agents, while Mary McDonald has sold over 20,000 copies of her book No Good Deed on Kindle.
Sometimes when one gets a contract with a small press, there are those who throw out all kinds of scare tactics, in the name of trying to protect the writer who may get ....I don't know.... published?
Watch out for these kinds of dream-crushing statements-- "I've never heard of them. Are you sure they're ok?" "Aren't you afraid to sign a contract without an agent?" "If your book doesn't do well, it could ruin your chances of ever getting published again." Many of these statements just don't make any sense, but people still throw them around like something really bad will happen if you veer off the beaten path.
I dislike scare tactics like this. It has writers worried into paralysis, afraid they will "submit to the wrong publisher" or "ruin their career" or whatever. When someone gives me advice about my career as a writer "for your own good," I run the other way, because it's like they are wearing a sign that says Dream-crusher ahead, detour for your own safety.