I'm jealous of the work that other writers create.
I'm jealous of their Tweets and their Facebook updates.
I'm jealous of their process.
I'm jealous of the lives they've led.
I'm jealous of the lives they're leading.
I'm jealous of the words they cut from the first draft.
I'm jealous of the way they read their stories aloud.
I'm jealous of their hair and their clothes and their accessories that tell everyone they're writers.
I'm jealous of their work ethic and I'm jealous of their friends.
I'm jealous of each wonderful word that is so much better than the words I choose.
Reading is hard for me because reading is an exercise in torture. There is a reason why I read a lot of comic books and fantasy fiction and it's not because it makes me feel feel comfortable (although it does): it's because I don't write either one of those things. I can read comic books and not think to myself "I will never be able to write like that." I can read fantasy fiction and not think "I will never think of something like this."
Comic books and fantasy fiction could be the only stories I can thoroughly enjoy.
That's not to say I don't love a good book and good short stories. As jealous as I get when I read something great, I'm also inspired. And given my hot and cold relationship with short stories, it's important to keep myself inspired.
Still, I'd love to be able to read something and just admire it for being great, perhaps take away some inspiration. I hate the fact that I get jealous. It's a reflection of my insecurities as a writer and I think those insecurities slow me down. Of the myriad of things that prevent me from living up to my potential, I think my insecurities play the biggest part.
I suppose we all find motivation somewhere. I just wish mine came from a more positive place.