Tuesday, September 27, 2005

apples to apples

I must learn to stop reading other people’s blogs.

Was going to write tonight. Thought I’d check some sites out first. One thing led to another and now I’m intimidated and depressed and disgusted and wondering why the heck I ever thought I could write. God, I hate it when I do that…

What is it about us that compels us to make unfavorable comparisons? Or, rather, what is it about ME?

If I’m writing about MY life in MY voice, why do I care what Belle the journalist in NYC is posting and that it’s a whole heck of a lot better than what I’ve posted? Or that she got 41 comments for one post? Or that her famously wonderous, fabulous, brand-new blog got featured somewhere or other? I’m not a journalist in NYC. I’m a mother of two in Cow Town. And yet, I do. Care, that is. And compare.

It gets me every time. I never did fully grasp the whole apples and oranges thing—they’re both fruit, after all.

So now I shrivel here in my insecurity, the words within me dying on the vine for lack of belief in them. I’ve got to quit doing this to myself…

Somebody stop me.

11 comments:

LifesEyes said...

NO. You must go on...we can't live without you!!! LOL. Just thought I'd give you a boost or two!

LifesEyes

danthress said...

That's funny because I was thinking the other day how your writing seems more fluid and effortless than mine. Ha!

I don't read too many blogs from people I don't know because I can't connect the words with the people. We write for God, which means at our best were his voice. Obviously he doesn't need us all to say the same thing. It's beautiful to watch you find your voice. I'm amazed at how much you've needed to "get out" since you started posting.

Keep writing and you'll start to understand more about yourself.

I know that my brother and my sister have read my blog. I don't know how often they read it and neither one has ever left a comment. I write what's on my heart, what breaks it, what makes it jump. Most of these thoughts have never been let out before, probably because it seemed like no one else was interested.

I'm glad my siblings read it but I wonder why they never leave a comment. Seems like more subtle family rejection to me. Our hearts need to cry out. These public-journals help. And it's so good to have a new family that is listening.

Looking forward to your next post. Maybe it will be a photograph, maybe an essay, maybe a rant. One thing for sure, it will be you, and you are beautiful.

Bless you, thank you.

D

Dean said...

Lorie,

I've been reading Belle, too. She's ggod, but I think her reputation is quickly approaching "overrated" status.

She has discovered a few simple tips for writing effectively and practices them well.

Writing is a skills set, and Belle has sharpened hers. We get depressed when we think the ability to write well is some kind of "talent" bestowed on a whim from on high. it's not. It's just a practice makes perfect kind of thing.

What can't be taught as easily as writing skills is the ability to see, to see what is funny, what is sad, what is weird or poignant in life. This is much harder than learning to avoid adverbs or set a scene with selective details.

I've known you long enough to know you're a person who can see. That's why you should keep writing. The rich stuff of life is around us everywhere even (maybe especially even) in Cow Town.

So keep at it, keep looking for material, because if you can do that, the writing is the easy part.

Belle said...

You're reading me, I'm reading you!
Keep up the good work. And, lord, I hope I'm not already approaching the "overrated" status like Dean suggested...

Dean said...

Belle,

Please understand I meant no disrespect when I mentioned being "overrated."

I've read at least two posts in the same number of days by people who are discouraged by your skills. They think they could never measure up. I would only consider you truly overrated if people come to believe your quality of work is something others could never achieve.

Also, remember I said your blog was quite good. Let's try to focus on the positives around here.

Mimi in NY said...

That's crazy talk Momma. The best stories are the ones told with the heart, irrelevant of the source or situation. My sis spends most of her days trawling blogs for people to irritate and shit on, bring down and denigrate. What's the point? We're all equal. It's not a competition. Although everyone in NY secretly believes it is.

Cynthia said...

Lorie,

Okay, so see, I bitched and moaned about my own inept ability to put it all down and I only got one comment. You do the same and look what happens. You even got a comment from 'Belle' herself. Amazing what goodness does. Don't linger in self pity too long. :-)

lorie said...

Um, wow. Okay. I need to process.

Thanks, all, for the reminder that this is not a competition- this is about being myself, figuring out what the heck that really means, and just DOING it a lot more often.

Dan- I know the feeling about the comments. People just don't know how insecure we all really are! "For God's sake, would you comment on my blog so I know someone gives a rip!"

Dean- you ground me, as usual. I'm so glad we're back in touch. Be nice to Belle or I'll kick your butt.

Belle- how random is that? Love what you've written. I will let it inspire me rather than depress me.

Mimi- do people really DO that? Wow, I'm naive...

Cindy- no more self-pity, I promise. Unless, of course, it's about aerobics class!

Dean said...

I'm being nice, very nice. I've gone to great lengths to show how sweet,sweet, sweet I am.

Let me just state, for the record, that I love Belle as much as the next guy.

Thanks, Lorie.

amy said...

I don't have anything inspiring to say, but I wanted to join the fun nonetheless...I read you religiously, Lorie, and enjoy every minute of it. And geeze, we've never even met. I don't have any social/emotional connection to you that makes it obligatory.

amy

lorie said...

Glad you joined the fun! Thanks for the non-obligatory comment- I'll take that as a great compliment! And I will continue to try to meet you!