The Moment I Realized How Silly It All Was: A group of writers were discussing what a lousy writer they thought Stephenie Meyer was. I’d heard similar discussions before, about her but also about Dan Brown and J.K. Rowling. I couldn’t help but think: How silly. While popular doesn’t necessarily equal good, when you start throwing stones at the very upper echelons of popular success – writers who are not just bestsellers but who have sold in a stratospheric fashion, catching lightning in a bottle – there’s no way your words aren’t going to seem like sour grapes. Someone assigns you a book to review for pay? Fine, take it to critical task. You want to talk in private to your best friends about how you’re really a better writer – or better yet, boast about your superior literary prowess within the confines of your own mind – again, fine. But going on public record? You just look small. You think you can do better? Then do better. And while you’re at it, try to figure out what successful people are getting right.