Yesterday Monica wrote a top ten list on reasons writers are scared of their own blogs. That prodded me on something I've been avoiding around here.
When I'm not ranting, making ten lists, or bragging about my wonderful children who can do no wrong and I'll smack down anyone who says otherwise, I talk about work. That was the idea in going public with PBW, to talk about the reality of it, and to get other perspectives on the table. I rarely talk about my work, though, except from the technical/career perspective or in shorthand: Got the cover art, killed the deadline, sold this or that.
I'd rather joke about my work than talk serious about it. Part of that comes from my belief that you have to be able to laugh at yourself and this gig, or it'll kill you. Jokes are also good velvet ropes. They keep everyone from getting too close. Close enough to see what I'm really doing behind the joke ropes is close enough to hack, slash, throw acid, torch, or make me hand out bookmarks again. No, thank you.
Then there's talking the talk. You know those writers out there who are really good at that dignified, authorial work-speak? They write stuff like:
Today I explored the inner sanctum of despair, and added a final, top note of irony to bring home how the protagonist's magnificent love has been utterly squandered. I'm not entirely pleased with the outcome, but it's adequate for the first draft.
I can't do that. God did not give me that gene. Whenever I try to put how I honestly feel about my work into words, it sounds like this entry I wrote today in my on-paper journal:
He's holding back, making me wait until the tune he wants starts. Then we dance. I don't know the steps. Everything about him is stomping on my toes. He's smirking, loves it, the jerk. I get that. He hurts because it's the only way he thinks he can make others feel anything. Doesn't make me like him any better.
Sounds like a sixteen-year-old's diary, written in pink ink. All I need to do is dot my i's with little hearts and scrawl in the margin but he might call me tonite then omigod what do I say????
I hate being afraid of anything, so might as well face it head-on. I've got this book I'm about to start writing that I've been waiting a long time to put on paper. It's going to be a major book for me, writer-wise. I'll try talking about how it goes, and see if I can be honest without reliving my Stridex years.