Monday, September 5, 2016

Two Months In Two Hundred Words or Less, and My Inner Editor

Hi everyone, happy Labor Day weekend. It's been too long, and there are so many things to blog about, like the Hugo Awards and my most recent short story publications ("The Farthest Nebula" in Mantid Magazine, "The Gnome in the Rosebush" in 9Tales from Elsewhere) and upcoming ones.

The main reason is that I've been job hunting while writing short fiction, and my mother broke her arm. In the middle of August she slipped in our front yard and landed on her right arm hard. She was unable to bend it, and  When it wasn't feeling better the next day I drove her to the ER after dinner, and the doctors wrapped it up in a cast. We didn't get out of the hospital until 4 AM, and I got up around seven AM to go to Toastmasters.

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My mom's arm will be okay; the cast comes off in a few weeks. My older brother and I have taken over the cooking, and learning all my mom's recipes. I've learned how to make rice and lentils in a pressure cooker, fry chicken with olive oil, turmeric powder and garlic bits, and curry various vegetables. My respect for my mother has grown knowing she makes a three-course dinner every night.

With that, my goal is to resume the attempts at blogging once to twice a month while job hunting and writing. I'm this year's Treasurer at my Toastmasters club, so I need to update some balance sheets and pay dues soon. In addition, I had started a job as a columnist at Panels online; Panels has become a part of Book Riot, the online website, and so I'll be writing two articles a month related to literature and comics.

So with that, I want to turn to a more writer-like topic. I was reading a Positive Writer post about a writer's Inner Editor. The Inner Editor, or the Internal Critic, is the voice in your head that discourages you from writing, judges the quality of the work you produce and the amount, and compares you to other authors. The Positive Writer post suggests to visualize your inner critic, since having a concrete image can help one talk down that critical voice so that you can do your job and write.

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My inner editor looks like my mirror image. She has curly black hair, square glasses, brown skin, and light brown eyes. She means well, and has been meaning well, but she's noted how often I forget to write things down, how I don't organize my plots or develop my characters. When she talks, it's like hearing a snippier version of myself. She asks why I don't write more, why I'm not submitting to more magazines, why I let myself get down and disappointed by real life so easily. Inner Editor makes me go to Sweater Town, to quote from Gravity Falls

I'd probably sit down and talk to Inner Editor over coffee. Sometimes she makes good points, like about submitting for anthologies well within deadline briefs and limits. I'd like her to help me adapt her criticism, and others' constructive words, into building better routines. I'd like to turn her doubts into reassurance. We can work together, and she wants to help.

If Inner Editor won't listen, I'd like a strategy for her belligerence as well. I'd like to leave her presence, and stay with my thoughts for the day. Meditation can help with that, and refocusing on my goals for today. Maybe she'll listen after a day of not seeing me. Or maybe she'll try to barge in and make her opinion known. Either way, I'll ignore her.

Here is to a new month, a new perspective, and some new writings. Have a fun Labor Day!

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