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    My daily writing--emails, journal entries, marginalia, more emails, blog posts, and tweets--shapes me as a writer, helping and hindering the big stuff I'm trying to accomplish. Every word counts.

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My Internal Editor Is a Big Nag

Referring to internal editors in my last post made me realize that mine has been sabotaging me lately. Ze tells me that none of the manuscripts I’ve submitted in the past few months is going to be accepted, and adds that if I really plan to submit more in the next few weeks, then that’s up to me, but why would I want to waste my time on that when nobody really gives a shit about what I have to say. Of course, I’m also wasting time on this blogging; ze suggests that perhaps that’s the reason for my failure to get anywhere close to finishing the rough draft of my novel this summer, as I had so ambitiously planned to do.

So, basically, my internal editor is a big nag who assumes that time is a vessel to be filled and that goals (must) never change.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been feeling very rebellious. As usual, I’ve been focusing on what I haven’t done rather than what I’ve accomplished. Not that I buy the internal editor’s bullshit, but I don’t quite have the energy to challenge zim on my own. A few friends have heard my call for help, which I communicated in the form of whining, and they patiently let me talk it through. I know what to do in these situations. If this were happening to you, I’d pump you up to help you externalize all the negative messages you’ve internalized over the years. My friends helped me get that kind of critical distance. (Don’t worry; I’m not going to start singing, “You’ve got to have friends,” or anything like that. Yeesh.)

True, I could be further along with the rough draft, but I was never going to finish it this summer. That was a ridiculous goal that desperately needed to be revised. I need to push past all of this, finish revising another piece, send it out, and get ready to send out another while I keep the novel going in the background. That’s reasonable. It’s a short-term goal that invites momentum. For now it’s all I can do.

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2 Responses

  1. Perhaps you need an ensemble cast of internal editors. You already have a Roseanne. Time to invite a Dan, a David, a Jackie. I mean, really, that Roseannian Editor is making a lot of noise inside your head!

  2. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

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