Monday, August 31, 2009

Check Please

A couple of days ago, after a long day of falling short and failure, I had one of those funny moments of self-doubt. The 'what are you thinking, go get a real job' moments. The 'just who do you think you are' voice.

So I started to think that what I needed to do is get me a reality check. Give one of my honest friends a call, and beg them to lay off the nicey-niceness and be very hard on me and my current delusion of being a writer. Who, I wondered, could be mean enough?

While I did ask Paul (story to follow), I realized this: it doesn't matter. By this I don't mean that I want to be crappy at writing. I want to improve, I want to grow, I want criticism. But ultimately, no matter what someone says to me about my skills or my voice or whatever, I am a writer. Writing has done more than stopped by for a visit. It's moved in, taken over my couch, started asking for snacks and keeps trying to hide the remote.

Yep. Yikes.

The story - while we were making dinner, I asked Paul about my writing. He said he wouldn't answer that. I got all mock grammatical and said, you *can't* or you *won't* - which of course led to a little acting out of my transformation into the Dragon Lady Who Destroyed the Butter Yellow Kitchen with Her Need for Approval.

I didn't actually morph into the above character from a domestic 'B' movie. The acting out was done by the inimitable Paul. Oh he got me laughing. I am particularly susceptible to his ways when I am laughing.

He stopped and he said, 'Let me ask you this. Do you think I'm a poor reader?'

I am a horrible wife. 'Yep,' I said. Then I did a little backpedal dance, complete with a hem and haw beat, but Paul didn't care. I'd fallen right into his special trap, a terrible mechanism constructed of humility, truth and wisdom, set to end a no-win conversation.

'So do you really think I'm qualified to judge writing? Cuz I don't.'

He is good. I am not. I guess that's what they mean when they say opposites attract.

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