“I’ve been reading your book -- it’s a tour de force! The narrative and visuals (everything from Death Valley to chocolate crinkle cookies) are so lively. It’s really unlike anything I’ve read before. ...
“I can’t end this email without acknowledging so, so much pain. I don’t even know what to say about what you’ve endured. But I’m hearing it through your words.”
Commentary: This is the first review from someone I wouldn't consider a pretty good friend (I've never met them in person, and only exchanged ~10 emails with them) and the first one from a professional writer. After their comments came in, I realized how much I had been yearning for such an affirmation. (Not that the other feedback hasn't mattered! It truly has.) (And, of course, 50 literary agents turned me down.)
Losing is, in several different ways, my life's work. I didn't write it for praise, but after pouring so much into it, I did want it to be good.
Of course, Buddhism notes that desire (and attachment) are what lead to suffering. (Along with Crohn's and lung collapses.)
So it goes.