DEAR ABBY: I am an amateur playwright. Our local theater sponsors an annual playwriting contest. The prize isn't monetary, but something far more important to an author -- a full-scale production of the play.
I have won this prize four times -- more than any other writer in the history of the contest. But is my family impressed? Not at all! My wife told me she thinks I write everything the same way and have simply repeated myself four times. Her put-downs are deeply hurtful.
I am up in years. It's unlikely I will ever again win this prize. So how do I respond to such indifference? What do you do when you feel you have accomplished something important and the response is, "So, what else is new?" -- LOOKING FOR VALIDATION IN FLORIDA
DEAR LOOKING FOR VALIDATION: My hat's off to you. That you have won this prize more than any other writer in the history of the contest is a notable achievement, and one that's not likely to be matched for a long time -- if ever. Attend the production, take your well-earned bow in the spotlight, and accept that the less you look to your wife for validation, the happier your life will be.