From Boas to Reality

12:25 AM Elizabeth Seckman 4 Comments

Even as a little girl, I wanted to be a writer.
Okay, so my idea of a writer was mostly  influenced by Felicia Gallant of  “Another World” (Oh the days of hurrying home from school to watch the soaps!)… sooo basically, I just wanted to spend my life wrapped in boas (the feathery kind) and click around in high heels (on the marble floors of my mansion!).
What I am finding is that writing is, ugh, work. There is no little fairy sprinkling golden words and ideas on my little blond head. (I think Steven King may be holding her hostage, I just can’t prove it.)
So, here I am. At the beginning.  The people in the ‘know’ tell me I need  to blog. And I need to publish some shorts (oh no, not my britches!). And I need to enter contests.  And I need to attend conferences. And I need to network. And I need to join writer’s groups. And I need to write. And I need to edit. And I need to query. And I need to research.  And for crying out loud, MAY I PLEASE HAVE A LITTLE TIME TO READ?
And I’m thinking I better pray.  Pray for a change of heart or the endurance to compete. It’s a tough world out there. So many good writers, so few good readers.
So, it’s important to bring the A game. Don’t get sloppy, don’t get cocky. My college English professor, Dr. Hart (Heartless was the pet name I fondly used in my thoughts). He gave me the first B I ever got in an English class. I was stunned. It almost brought me to tears. He stopped me as I was leaving the class.
He asked in his uber thick German accent, “Miss Hartman. Did my B surprise you?”
“Uh, hell yes.” (I really just nodded…understand, what I say and what I think are rarely congruent)
“You have talent Miss Hartman. But you are lazy. I’m sure you’ve earned  A’ s your whole life with writing that is ‘good enough’, but in this class, you better be prepared to stun me to get your A. Now have a good day.”
“Pecker head.” (okay, so I choked out a simple ‘thank you’…what else do you say to a scary German guy who holds the power to end your scholarship with a B?)
So, now when I write. Dr. Heartless, uh I mean Hart, is my muse (Darn you King, release the fairy!). He sits on my shoulder and barks, “lazy” until I struggle word by individual word until I hear him say, “eh, that’s better”.
And hopefully today’s result is a post that appears effortless ~  a chatty little informative dialogue between friends. And the best part is? You have no idea how many drafts it took to get here (3).  And in the sage, sitcom wisdom of  Dr. Bob Keslo  (“Scrubs”) … Anything in this world that's worth having doesn't come easy.”

4 comments:

  1. this is great! don't let Dr heartless follow you everywhere you go and write. pray that God gives you the words and you follow where he is leading you. He gave you a gift...he will not lead you astray!!

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  2. Wouldn't it be awesome to sit around in feathery boas with painted nails and high heels and meet the muse every day? Then the contests and conferences and writers groups too! (ULGH I don't even think they allow feather boas at these things.) One step at a time. One prayer at a time--though many at a time work a little better in my opinion-- and we'll get there.

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  3. It's great! and good for you! mr. hart can suck it. keep writing. you'll always have a reader here!

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  4. Thanks guys...it's good to have friends' support. But I have to give Mr. Hart credit, he was right. I prefer the easiest route to all things. That's why I love break and bake cookies!

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