Good Enough is Good Enough

6:07 AM Elizabeth Seckman 38 Comments


My husband can't do anything by halves. Every chore, every task is accompanied by worry and anxiety to reach whatever high standard he has set in his head as his success point.

Take our deck, for example. Thirteen years ago, we decided to build one on the back of our house. My husband wanted it to be sturdy enough to take the abuse of four active boys.

I bet you're thinking that's just smart, not exactly overkill.

To better explain, I did some googling of carpenter sites.

These sites recommended setting floor joists 2 to 2.5 feet apart. Ours are 1 foot. Okay, so with the joists that close together, we could have easily used 2x4's on the top. Instead, we used 2x6's.

To anchor our deck to the house, my husband special ordered lag bolts so big the guy at the hardware store thought we were building a second-story deck instead of a ground-level deck on posts set in enough concrete to pave a driveway.

My oldest brother looked over the progress and asked if Chad was building it sturdy enough to break down transmissions on it. My other brother, the polite optimist, suggested if we ever wanted to add onto our house, the deck was a solid enough foundation to go two stories high.

Okay, so that was all well and good. There's no harm in building a deck solid enough to march elephants across it. The argument started with the top deck boards. I told him to just lay the boards and screw them down.

Good enough is good enough. Unless you're Chad Seckman. He worried: if the boards aren't tight enough together, they would shrink and be gapped too far apart. That worked for me- easier to sweep the dirt off.

At his insistence, every board was laid with painstaking care with Chad prying on each and every board with a crow bar to keep them tight while the boys and I screwed them down.

The result? Deck boards so close together he had a new worry. There were no gaps in the deck boards, so it couldn't drain.

We could have used the deck for hydroponic gardening...

His new deck was destined for rot.

He wanted to take up every board and redo it. The boys were about ready to hang him. They were tired of the deck building process. (Did I mention we had to dig out several thousand pounds of dirt and haul it away before we even began the building process?)

I insisted we leave it. When and if a board rotted, he could take them all up and reset them.

This year, we finally had a spongy board, so he got the green light to rip up all the boards and reset them. So, over the weekend he and two of the boys basically rebuilt the top of the deck. (The underside is still solid as a rock, if you were wondering.) It's now perfect, because he measured the gap between each board. They're all equal distance apart.

 A thirteen-year worry off his plate.

Once the boards were moved, we had 6 boards to spare.
If only he'd have listened to me thirteen years ago and left the crow bar in the basement....

That was officially my last "I told you so".


On the writing front...



I've been trying to study marketing. Ugh, I know. I was reading a post on social media content and it was suggested a writer offer 90% information and fun, 10% "buy my books" posts. Only hitting social media when it's time to sell is a no-no (duh, how rude, right?), but we also make the mistake of not mentioning our books at all. I'm totally guilty of that. Even my own children don't know how many books I've had published (7 if you're wondering).

It's hard, right? We don't want to be pains in the butt, but we also don't want to be our own worst enemies.

So, for this week, here is the marketing portion of the post:

Might I suggest Defying Reason? It's a summer romance told in an alternating POV. I had the most fun switching from her view to his. It was a great opportunity to do a he said, she said story. Spoiler alert! They don't all often see things the same way.


Buy it Here!





38 comments:

  1. Hahaha!! The decking story did make me laugh. Glad the thirteen year worry is no more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We always get a laugh in hindsight. Fortunately, he's a good sport and knows he has an issue with his quest for perfection.

      Delete
  2. ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

    the M word

    ohhhhhhhhhh

    I'm scarred for the rest of the month......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. On the bright side, the month is almost over. But be warned, I'm going to keep mentioning the M word, so I'm sending you preventative hugs.

      Delete
  3. The deck building process was too funny. Sounds like you're perfectly balanced as a couple. One who worries too much and the other who's perfectly happy to take the middle of the road.

    On the marketing front, I never know when I'm doing too much. Half the time, I feel like I'm doing nothing at all. Good luck with those book sales.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a tough balance. You don't want to be a nuisance to people, but saying nothing gets us nowhere.

      We do make a good team. He's a worrier. I'm a care-caster.

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  4. Wow. Your husband is a perfectionist. Good thing he's not a writer, hey? Heh.
    I'm like you, Elizabeth. I tend to error on the side of not advertising. It's hard to find a happy medium isn't it?
    Wishing you much success with Hoosier Dad.

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    Replies
    1. If he was a writer, he'd either be a best seller or a drinker. LOL

      I hate advertising and I hate marketing, but it's a necessary evil.

      Delete
  5. Funny story. Matt built a few decks for us and friends in our time in NC and luckily he wasn't such a perfectionist. As far as I know they are still there.

    When does Hoosier Dad come out?

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    1. Our deck may last longer than our house. LOL

      See? I am a horrible marketer. Hoosier Dad came out in June.

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  6. I've gotta admit it: I kinda like the way your husband thinks. If you're gonna do a job, might as well do it right. Then again, there's right and there's RIGHT, right (And I guess your were, eh? But I don't buy it. No way that'll be your last "I told you so." HA!)

    Marketing sucks. 'Nuff said.

    Have a super weekend! You can build a transmission on your deck...

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    Replies
    1. That's exactly what he says! Let me guess, you fold your dirty clothes too? LOL. My husband used to, but I broke him of that habit.

      (It probably won't be the last I told you so...there is this post that will live on for as long as I'm on blogger.)

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  7. Oh that sounds so familiar! My husband is much the same with his projects, but he's already adjusted and learned to let good be good enough sometimes. Other times though...perfection isn't perfect enough.

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    1. You start to worry about their health. All that worry can't be good for the body. But mine is learning too. Slowly.

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  8. LOL, I agree that will probably not be your last "I told you so". Enjoyed the deck story.

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    1. Probably not. Every time he argues, there will at least be the unsaid reminder.

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  9. You should thank him for giving you a funny story to share.

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    Replies
    1. That is so true! And for being a good sport when I tease him.

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  10. lol wow, crowbar? He sure goes the extra 50 miles. At least 13 years later he gets to fix it. Yeah, ugg to marketing.

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  11. you family so funny =D
    we need to get together somehow and come up with a perfect book marketing strategy - right!

    ps - i was thinking about RRHA again. maybe we just post once a month? alternate months? what do you think? i do get crazy ideas sometimes and think, that would be good for the RRHA blog!

    Tara Tyler Talks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We'll come up with something and yes, we should put our marketing heads together!

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  12. Interested in marketing, publishing.. try Emma Darwin’s blog - The Itch of Writing 🌹

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  13. FYI: I just read Past Due. Loved it. Reviewed it on Amazon and Book Bub.

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    Replies
    1. Well now, aren't you just my new favorite person!!!

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  14. Yes, probably some men are perfectionists. I have one of those at my home!

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  15. Hello Elizabeth, thanks so much for your visit. I know what you mean. My husband can’t walk, can’t pick anything up, has no balance and can’t stand without pain, but he is marvellously cheerful and with effort I keep him that way 🌹 He sleeps during the day, and in those moments I write. It keeps me sane 🌹🌹

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    1. When my father and brother were being treated for cancer, that is when I started writing. Reality was tough and the future felt too scary. Disappearing into fictional words for bits of time gave my brain the necessary break and diversion it needed. So happy to hear you get therapeutic relief from words too.

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  16. Wow - I can so relate to this. And my father was the same way. Recommended guidelines? Pffft. Those were for amateurs.

    I do agree that the constant in-your-face tweeting solely about one's book is a bit annoying. Your marketing plug, above, is lovely - so gentle, yet intriguing.

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    1. My husband will take something that has been assembled elsewhere and re-assemble it because he is just certain whoever did it didn't tighten things well enough or reinforce them properly.

      My biggest pet peeve about authors are the ones who completely disappear, only emerging at launch time to sell me a book. As a reader, I find that offensive and hope I never do it.

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  17. Better to be safe than sorry, huh? But yeah, a porch that floods...not good. lol

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  18. Dali nailed it (no pun intended:), didn't he?
    FYI: As far as marketing, if you're doing any blog touring for Hoosier Dad, you're most welcome at my place.
    Enjoy that deck:)

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