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Monday, March 21, 2011

Practice Practice Practice

By now you're probably either ignoring or somewhat annoyed by my mostly-short, mostly-shallow WordPress daily posts (especially since I've been posting more than one a day).  I know I wrote a brief disclaimer before I got started, but I want to explain a little deeper why I'm doing these exercises.

I love to write.  I always have, especially fictional stories and poetry.  I've also always had a flair for the dramatic diary entry.  (You do NOT want to see the entries from my tween years.)  I have never written very much, though, because if I can't do it right, why bother?

Ridiculous, right?  Writing isn't about doing it "right" - or even doing it well.  Writing is about self expression.  Especially where journals and diaries are concerned.  Who cares what you write?  The catharsis is in the activity.

A friend of mine fancies herself a writer (and she is tremendously well-spoken and entertaining), and she wrote a nice post about the importance of writing practice.  Now, I am not aspiring to be published, though I wouldn't turn down the opportunity if it were God's will.  To "be a writer" isn't entirely about being published, and it isn't entirely about self expression.  All writers fall somewhere on the spectrum, and, as with any talent/skill, practice makes perf...um...better, regardless of ultimate goal.

So...

You may have noticed that I referred to these silly little posts as "exercises."  Exercise, or practice, is exactly how I view them.  I believe each one has the potential to become something meaningful, or at least something fun, but the practice is in the doing, whatever the result.  That said, what I, personally, am practicing is not the writing so much as the unclenching during the copyediting process.

I have written some very good articles, and I tend to hold myself up to those standards every time I publish.  That is just not realistic.  Additionally, I have standards for how meaningful, clear, long and original (love me some good quotes!) a post 'should' be.  That's getting a little specific.  If I do decide to post something that doesn't meet my criteria, I wish and I wash over the decision, even though it's in the past.  I also have a number of unfinished posts glaring at me, taunting me, telling me that I can't move on until I've finished them.  I need to let go and understand that if I'm meant to finish them, I will.  If not, who on earth cares?

So...

I am doing these little daily exercises.  I'm having fun with them.  I'm following them wherever they lead, even if that's nowhere.  I'm being okay with that.  I'm teaching myself that it's okay to be okay with that.

In the meantime, read them, scan them, skip them.  It's up to you.  I've clearly labeled them so that you may make that decision without losing any of your life or brain cells to my triviality.

And!

I welcome any topic challenges, though I reserve the right to take your idea in a direction that you do not intend.  It's not personal; it's writing!

3 comments:

  1. Writing is *always* practice, and it is never perfect! That's what I love about it. You can go over a piece 500 times and it still won't be perfect in the author's eye. I have a confession: I like reading your daily (hourly LOL) musings :)

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  2. I hoped somebody would enjoy them. I love reading Charlenes, the writer friend I reference in the post.

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  3. Ugh. I tried to post a comment, but the net ate it. Thanks! I like your blog and wish you luck with the writing regimen! :) I'm still 4-6 weeks from typing w/ 2 hands again, but the surgery went well! Charlene

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