Reality Bites

Ate lunch at Ezell’s Catfish House yesterday.  (Everything fried with a side of extra-sweet coleslaw.  My husband likes it, but it’s a little too much for my system.  That’s the price you pay when you eat healthy for a long time.  You can’t go back to your old ways.)

As I was joking around with my best friend, I noticed that a lot of men were staring at me.  First, I checked to see if a button had popped on my blouse or if I’d forgot to wear panties beneath my white jeans.  Then I checked to see if a squirrel was nesting on my head or if I had developed that 3-breasts look.  (The girls know what I’m talking about.)  But, no, everything seemed fine.

I fluffed my hair and blushed.

Just when I was about to get a real ego boost, I noticed that a medium sized television was hanging over my head and the game was playing in silent mode.

Damn!

Author’s Note:  Some of you may wonder why I write these short skits of micro-fiction, or micro-truths as the case may be, about everyday life.  I’m going to give you a piece of advice on writing:  I don’t care if you are writing the next great American novel or Gone With the Wind-ten years in the making-or a book that’s going to change the world; it still a good idea to back-up from your labors occasionally and pen a short piece just for fun. 

Your goals should be:

1.  move away from that mountain of work.

2.  short and easy, kick the formality to the curb, but try to be aware of the rules that you are breaking.

3.  tight formation.  (less is more)

4.  honesty is the best way to avoid clichés.

5.  don’t be coy, be provocative.

6.  you’re looking for that tiny flicker that crosses the reader’s face, not necessarily a big chuckle or handkerchief full of tears. 

7.  educational and humorous pieces always get an A+ from me.

8.  try to follow grammatical rules, but don’t turn it into a task.  (As my son once told me:  Gee Mom, lighten up.  We’re only chatting here.)

What’s the morale here?  If the reason that you don’t blog more is because you haven’t got time to perfect each post, then you’re making a mistake.  Content, meaning, and wit is more important than editing.  If editing was the big secret to writing, then every school teacher in the world would be on the Best Seller list.  Most readers don’t give a damn about your syntax; they just want a good story.

If you can’t turn out a short interesting blip, then how can you write a novel?  No way.  You can’t?  Best advice:  write, write and write some more.  Hit a sour note?  So what?  If someone calls you on a mistake, thank them politely and keep going.

If you choose to write, you have chosen something that only gets better with age.  Cost are minimal, you can’t bend out of shape, break it beyond repair or loose it on the stock market.  You can’t use it all up or have it repossessed by the bank.  Your Muse can be a lifelong friend, but try to stay in touch.  The more you commune with your Muse, the more that fickle spirit will talk back.

Some of you may want to hide all of your work, least some malcontent pinch it.  But here’s the thing:  You can always come up with more; the thief can not.

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10 thoughts on “Reality Bites

  1. Pingback: Blogging Rule #1,207 « Notes from An Alien

  2. Good advice! Sometimes I spend too much time trying to make it perfect, sometimes I don’t but I’m not sure my posts are ever perfect, whatever that is… but I guess I’ve found a good balance. I like your paragraph beginning “If you choose to write…” Sage wisdom!

    • Here’s something that I read the other day that you might like:

      “You must stop editing–or you’ll never finish anything. Begin with a time-management decision that indicates when the editing is to be finished: the deadline from which you construct your revisionary agenda. Ask yourself, ‘How much editing time is this project worth?’ Then allow yourself that time. If it’s a 1,000-word newspaper article, it’s worth editing for an hour or two. Allow yourself no more. Do all the editing you want, but decide that the article will go out at the end of the allotted time, in the form it then possesses. ”

      -Kenneth Atchity, A Writer’s Time

  3. Pingback: My Latest Internet Crush, Word Execution | Kay Camden

  4. I really liked this. It was hugely beneficial for me to participate in NanoWrimo for the very reason I had a horrible self editing issue. Even now when I blog, I’m barely looking at my posts before pressing the “Publish” button. I’ve found that too many times, I can overwork a sentence or a paragraph, and that my original thought was the best, most creative one.

    Thanks for the tips 🙂

    • There does seem to be some kind of magic cloak over my eyes when it comes to editing MY own stuff.

      Relax with the blog and have some fun. Think of it as being a hostess at a party. More beer, less escargot.

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