Why I write: losing and finding my voice

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Someone asked me recently why I write.

My immediate answer was: because I have to.

It’s like asking someone why they blink. I’ve been writing ever since I can remember and at this point it’s an automatic response. The part that is pretty new is the part where I actually let other people read the things I write. There was a very specific moment when I decided to do that.

Many people have stories of being reborn after an illness. They speak of the resulting spiritual enlightenment and a reordering of priorities. They wake up to their lives and are compelled to live in the moment. Usually, it’s brought on by cancer or something equally horrible.

I was lucky – my wake-up call was a little quieter.

I lost my voice.

I got a cold and just when I thought it was getting better, I went silent. Suddenly and completely silent.

This had never happened to me before. I always assumed that if you lost your voice, you could still whisper. Not true. Turns out whispering is just as hard on your vocal cords, so even that felt like I was being choked.

I could not voice a single word. No dinnertime conversation with my husband. No phone calls catching up with friends. No laughing. No errands that required conversing with anyone. No idle chatter with my dog.

Someone suggested to me it was like a silent retreat, which I’ve been wanting to do forever. I wish I had the inner strength to treat it as such — but it felt nothing like that. It was stifling and claustrophobic. I felt so miserable and bottled up that I couldn’t even write.

I filled my days with noise. The TV or the stereo was always on, filling the air with sounds I couldn’t express. I had always loved silence. My daily mediation was always so important to me, but now I found the quiet to be excruciating. The solace of silence that had been my savior through the hardest times of my life, was now mocking me.

I got depressed. I looked up voice loss on Web MD. I got more depressed. I was convinced I would be voiceless forever.

After ten days of silence, my throat started to heal and I got my voice back. I wanted to shout from the rooftop. I wanted to express every thought that came into my head. I just wanted to be me again.

For a person who always wants to just slide by and fade quietly into the background, the fact that I was desperate to embrace my me-ness was something of a revelation.

I’ve always been a people-pleaser. Never wanted to rock the boat. Always wanted to be a good girl. To fit in. But when I literally could not speak up and be heard, that was all I wanted.

In losing my voice, I found it again.

I realized that I had been choking my voice in the rest of my life, too. I never wanted people to read my work because I was scared of being vulnerable. The day I got my voice back, I decided to write the book I had been thinking about for years. I decided to start this blog. I decided to stop playing small and hiding from my life.

Having a voice is a precious gift, however you chose use it, by writing, painting, teaching, working out complex mathematical equations or starting a revolution. Sure, you might offend someone by speaking your truth. You might be laughed at or criticized or worst of all – ignored completely.

But all that is preferable to engulfing yourself in silence and never using your voice to better yourself or the world. Because one thing I’ve learned about life – you need to truly show up if you want it to be good.

Like the wise prophets Barenaked Ladies said:

“If I hide myself where ever I go, am I ever really there?”

- For You

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If you’re a violet, be a violet: thoughts on authenticity

orchid

This is not me. This is an orchid.

My husband is reading this book for work called The Speed of Trust. He was telling me a story from it, that goes something like this:

The president of a university was preparing for a fancy dinner in his home. There were going to be government officials and major donors and other fancy people in attendance. As they were setting up, a delivery of beautiful, elaborate flower centerpieces arrived, which had been ordered by the development office of the university. But the president’s wife came to him and said there was a problem. The housekeeper had already prepared centerpieces: single violets that she had picked from the garden and placed in butter dishes. The president looked at the fancy flowers and said “No problem. Just send the flower arrangements back to the florist. We already have the centerpieces that Lola made.”

This story takes my breath away.

It’s supposed to be a story about respect, but it also signifies something else to me. It’s a reminder how beautiful it is when someone lives authentically and doesn’t cave to the grandiose expectations of others. For many of us, the simplest thing is the best thing.

Sometimes I feel like a violet in a butter dish, surrounded by exotic arrangements. Right now, my book agent is sending the manuscript of my memoir out to publishers. As I learn my way through this process, I hear that what “sells” in actor memoir is drama. Rehab, Twitter fights, scandals…those long, ugly roads that I intentionally bypassed.

My book doesn’t have those things. It has similar stories and themes as this blog – the challenges of growing up, figuring out who you are, and balancing that with what is expected of you. It’s about those real life questions we all wrestle with, like how do we peel ourselves off the couch after we’ve had our hearts broken? How much do we give up so we can discover our true purpose in life? It’s about the ways we are all the same and why it’s never to late to write the script for your own life.

The point is: if you are a violet in a butter dish, there is no use in trying to be an exotic, towering orchid. And if you are an orchid, it’s pointless to try to be a violet. One is not better or worse. They are just different. The real value comes in living whoever you are with wholeheartedness.

But it seems that because I don’t have orchid-type drama, it’s more challenging to convince publishers that people actually want to read that. According to those rules, if I would just have a psychotic breakdown and/or get a bikini wax on a reality television show, I would write a better book.

Sometimes that is frustrating, but this flower story reminds me that I don’t write for the people who just want orgies and car crashes. I don’t do it to be famous or to sell more copies than a Real Housewife. I am not going to dress myself up like an orchid and climb into a tiny box that someone else created, just to sell books. It’s not worth it.

I write for me. I write because it’s the air I breathe and it’s the way I relate to the world.

I also write for you. I write for people who love to read and love to connect. I write for those who feel that words have the power to change things. Inspire people. Provide comfort when everything looks dark and scary.

That’s why I write.  And why I will keep writing. I thank you for reading the words of a happy little violet in a butter dish.

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The Tiger Mother: race, success and lessons on the wrong thing

The Tiger Mother is at it again. She’s getting folks all riled up by saying that the parenting style of some groups (such as Chinese, Indians and Mormons) primes their kids for success more than others.  Personally, I can’t offer any opinion on parenting, since we’ve not chosen to go the kid route. My only parenting advice is that liver treats work well for convincing Grace to not attack the neighbor dog.

People are getting all flustered about the racial implications of what she’s saying – but I keep coming back to one thing:

What the hell does “success” mean?

Tiger mom says it’s clear – income, occupational status and test scores. That kind of makes sense. It’s a nice, clean, empirical way of measuring something.

  • Higher income = more success
  • Higher status = more success
  • Higher test scores = more success

That seems to be a widely accepted definition in our society. But I’m not sure I like it. By those measurable accounts, I was much more successful when I was 15 than I am at 35. Twenty years ago, I had:

  • Higher income – I got paid more.
  • Higher status - I was more “famous” (whatever that creepy word means).
  • Higher test scores – I rarely went to school, but the movie marketing people told me that I “tested well” with screening audiences, which resulted in more work.

But what about…oh, I don’t know…happiness? Where does that rank? What about passion? Purpose? Authenticity? How do you measure that stuff and roll it up into success? In our culture it’s pretty simple: you don’t. You toss them to the side because you can’t buy yourself a boat with purpose.

I have so much more joy and passion now than I did when I was an actor, but those intangibles don’t seem to carry as much weight in some circles.

I recently made a list of the things that equal a successful life for myself. It mostly had to do with my family and friends, contributing to the greater good and taking care of my mind, body and spirit. None of them had to do with being on the cover of People Magazine.

But it took me a while to develop this way of thinking. When I left my acting career, I was scared of what people would think. Would I get thrown in a pile of useless “has beens”? Was I, at 22, washed up and destined to never do anything as good ever again?

I went through a phase where I decided I wanted to be a lawyer. I even visited a law school to sit in on classes and went to their campus store and looked longingly at the sweatshirts. At least if I was a lawyer, I’d have a fancy degree I could wave around. Something that proved to other people that I was still worth something.

It finally dawned on me that I didn’t want to be a lawyer (no offense to the lawyers out there…especially my dad). I was just trying to feel like I had a justified place in the world and people would think that I was still successful. But what I really wanted was to be a writer. That less prestigious, less financially rewarding occupation was what made my heart flutter.

Ambition is wonderful. But I was being ambitious about the wrong things.  What I really wanted was a life that really fed my soul – not just my bank account and other people’s opinions of me.

Being successful now means that my life has meaning. Being “known” never made me feel successful. Doing interviews didn’t do that. Getting invited to fancy parties didn’t do that.

What does make me feel successful is volunteering to clean litter boxes and write thank you notes at the animal shelter. Or getting an email from someone who was touched by something I wrote on this blog – which I offer for free and get paid absolutely nothing. Or making my husband laugh.

So, what if we thought about success differently? What if we thought about:

  • passion instead of income?
  • authenticity instead of status?
  • happiness instead of test scores?

I’m not sure that the Tiger mom would understand, but you couldn’t pay me a million dollars to go back to being “successful.” I’ll take my poorly-paying, lower-status profession that makes me deliriously happy. And besides, I don’t think lawyers are allowed to wear sweatpants to work.

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Stepping back: lessons of 2013

One thing I learned is that many people come here searching for photos of my feet. Here you go, weirdos.

I’m not a fan of new year’s resolutions. There are just so many ways to screw up my vague proclamation to “be healthier” or whatever. I’d just be setting myself up to spend the entire month of March wallowing in my abandoned resolutions and a pint of New York Super Fudge Chunk.

But I do love to step back and take time to reflect on life. This past year has been a significant one for me. I threw myself completely out of my comfort zone and learned a lot as I flailed around in free-fall. So, here are my favorite lessons of 2013.

People are cool

I was terrified of you all. I was terrified to put my writing out there and be more public. I was afraid to fail and look stupid. I had been so happy hiding out and only writing for myself, but I realized that I could be even happier being truthful about my life – my whole life – and connecting with people. And I found that you are lovely, funny, encouraging folks and I’m happy to know you. My writing means the world to me, so thank you very much for reading my stuff.

Anonymous commenters can be less cool

When I found out that the Huffington Post did an article without my knowledge (an article about me and this blog that stung with a little snark) their comment section was quite active. Some comments were fine. But others were decidedly haters. This was not constructive criticism, not thoughtful opinions that differed from mine, just general nastiness from behind the cowardly anonymity of a keyboard. My feelings were hurt and my thin skin ripped into tattered shreds. I almost called the whole writing thing quits, I wanted to just go back to my little cave and be forgotten. But what would that say about me as an artist if a little name-calling defeated me? So, I got really good at repeating this:

“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet” - Mahatma Gandhi.

I’m pretty sure that Gandhi would approve of my decision to no longer read HuffPo comments.

Teenagers are people and therefore cool

I had the opportunity to talk to high school students about authenticity. I loved it. They were awesome. They inspired me and made me feel welcome and not like an awkward lady who was old enough to be their mother. They asked great questions. They laughed at my jokes. And if they fell asleep at any point, they hid it beautifully.

Being brave is cool

I traveled to New York to attend a couple of writery events this year. I was horribly nervous, but they were rewarding beyond my wildest dreams. I signed with my literary agent at one conference, and met incredible people like Sharon Saltzberg and Elizabeth Gilbert at another. Oh, and I got a shit-ton of free books…and what is better than that? I think being brave should always be rewarded with a suitcase full of not-yet-released hardcovers, even if you have to haul them on and off a train by yourself.

Meditation continues to be cool 

While it’s great writing about almost being drowned by a manatee, why residuals are pitiful and the fun stuff I get to write for HelloGiggles, I really love delving into deeper things, too. I published an article about meditation, one of my favorite topics, in Elephant Journal this year. Meditation has without a doubt saved my life. I love being able to share that with others who might suffer from anxiety or panic attacks.

Words are really damn cool

I’m always so thrilled to get your emails and Facebook messages – even if it takes me forever to get back to you. I love hearing your stories and I’m in awe of the way that words connect us. I’m so grateful that we can realize that even when our circumstances look different, we all tend to ask the same questions. We wonder what contribution we want to make in life. We all worry that we are different and might be rejected, we all want to be seen, accepted and understood. And when we talk about those things, we are able to create that bond. Yay, words!

Everyone loves Grace

My little pup really is special and you all have proved it. Thanks for tolerating all the ramblings of a proud dog-mom. Our shelter dog reminds me on a daily basis that it’s never to late to reinvent yourself and embrace all the joy that is around us.

It’s been an incredible year for me, and I can’t wait to see what 2014 has in store for all of us. I wish you all the very best for a happy and healthy new year!

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Go well, Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela died today. As I always do when I’m heartbroken, I write.

I find myself tongue-tied and not sure what to say, so I’ll just start at the beginning.

When I was 15 years old, I pasted this in my journal:

SA

I felt connected to South Africa and South Africans, for absolutely no reason. I had never been there. I didn’t even know anyone who had ever been there. My love was completely illogical. And it was so deeply rooted that my toenails ached for a place I had never seen.

I auditioned for The Power of One and when they didn’t hire me, I cried. Not because I didn’t get the role, but because it seemed like my best chance to get to South Africa. No such luck. My love affair would have to remain long distance.

When I quit acting and moved to Virginia in search of myself, I got my GED and at the age of 28, I started college. In 2008 I had the chance to study abroad. I finally had my chance to go to South Africa. I was ecstatic as I took my antimalarials and set foot on the land that felt as much like home as any place I had ever been. I studied environmental science and anthropology for four weeks. We traveled around the country. Johannesburg, Venda, Kruger, Bushbuck Ridge, Blyde River Canyon.

I found myself in South Africa.

I stepped out of my old self – the former actor, exhausted from an 18-year career in the film industry, feeling lost and ill-prepared for real life. I learned how to be brave there. How to connect with people. How to live from my heart with an authenticity and an honesty that had always terrified me. I was stripped down there. For the month-long trip, I had one small duffle-bag that contained four T-shirts and two pairs of jeans. I had no room to carry my fear and insecurity.

And I got to walk in the footsteps of Mandela, the man who had changed the world. A man who reinvented himself, time and time again. Who admitted his weaknesses and believed that we can only be strong together. His feelings on community and justice and truth burrowed into my soul and made a home there. His tireless efforts for peace and compassion became my inspiration.

When I got home from South Africa, my only regret was that my husband hadn’t been with me. Within 7 months we were back on a plane to Cape Town. I wanted to see Robben Island, the prison where Mandela had spent 18 years of his life. I stood there and wept. Not because I was sad, but because I was overwhelmed by his enduring faith in humanity. I cried because I was overwhelmed by the beauty of his existence.

robben island 2

This is a terrible photo of me crying outside of Mandela’s cell on Robben Island

I remain overwhelmed that I got to live in the world at the same time as this great man. I got to breathe the same air and see the same sky. We are all connected through Ubuntu, Mandela’s guiding philosophy: I am because we are.

I am because he was.

I am able to pursue my dreams because he demonstrated astonishing bravery. I’m able to forgive, because he forgave on the deepest level. I’m able to contribute to the world, because he demonstrated that one person can make a difference. I’m able to cause a little trouble with the unacceptable status quo, because he was a total badass.

I strive to move through the world with a tiny fraction of his presence.

And now he is gone and I’m heartbroken.

I always found it so reassuring to know that he was in the world.

But someone like him can never really die. The impact Mandela had will live forever. And although I keep crying, I know that most of those tears are in gratitude for the fact that there ever was a Mandela to miss.

Go well, Madiba.

For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others”

- Nelson Mandela

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Storytelling: honesty or exploitation?

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When I first decided to be a little more open with my writing, I was really nervous. I was concerned about interaction with the faceless “public.” But I soon realized that I absolutely love getting your emails and Facebook messages. Connecting with you all is a joy. I’m honored that you would reach out to share your stories and ask me questions. (You also tend to be a kind and hilarious group of people who write well, so that’s pretty damn cool.)

Recently, I got an email that really made me think. I believe that it said some decent things in the beginning, but in typical me-style, I skipped right over them and got to the part that made me squirm.

…the only issue I have with your blog posts is that you keep pointing out that you “were” an actor. If you want to move on from your past as much as your posts seem to illustrate, why do you keep bringing up the fact that you were once an actor publicly on this blog? Are you exploiting the fact that you were once an actor to promote your book and blog site?

Ouch.

But after I licked my wounds for a bit, I realized that I really wanted to answer this question.

When I left L.A, I hid from my former career for more than 10 years. I rarely talked about it, even to my closest friends. I denied it when people recognized me. I was ashamed of the way it made me stand out and how I was treated differently from other people. I felt like a freak.

I’ve since decided that negating 18 years of one’s existence isn’t healthy and I wanted to have the freedom to talk about my life from age 4 – 22. And by “talk” I mean “write” because I’m a writer and that’s what I do. I write about it, because my past exists, and I look like an idiot when I pretend there is not an elephant in the room. I’d rather invite that elephant to sit down and rest a while and not worry about trying to hide behind the ficus plant.

More than that, I wanted to write about the stuff that few others seemed to be talking about. Like the fact that actors are normal people. The fact that the entertainment industry is not automatically the right path for everyone. The fact that when you see the sausage being made, sometimes you don’t want to be part of it. The fact that people, regardless of their profession, can change their minds and chose a dream that looks different from what people expected of them.

Am I exploiting my life? I don’t know. Cheryl Strayed wrote Wild about walking the Pacific Crest Trail. In it, she talks about her past – so is she “exploiting” her drug history? Her mother’s death? Maybe she is exploiting Pacific Crest Trail itself?

Writers tend to write what they know. Which is a good thing, because when we write about things we don’t know – it makes for some pretty shitty reading material.

But he went on:

Almost a little hypocritical if you ask me. I honestly believe if you wanted to step away from your celebrity status completely, then you should change you name, make a classified pseudonym for all your public posts, and creative writing projects.

While I want to thank this person for his career advice, I also want to add that I’ve been doing that for years. I did change my name and have another successful blog that has absolutely nothing to do with my former career. I also wrote for non-profits and did communications consulting. You don’t know about any of that…well…because I used a pseudonym.

In addition to that writing, I also want to write about pop culture. I’m a sociology nerd who reads soc textbooks for fun. I’m fascinated by the way we structure and institutionalize our lives and the way we, as a society, behave.  I want to write about the cultural pressures that come along with choosing a different path in life and I don’t want to feel like I have to hide who I am. And who I am includes (but is not exclusively limited to) my past.

I wanted to write about some of my personal experiences because I think they are a way in which I can contribute to the conversation. I have some stuff to say that I hope can be of use to someone. I’ve shared some things about my life, and in return, people have told me the most wonderful, intriguing, inspiring things about their lives. That connection through storytelling is what it’s all about for me. And I can’t connect if I’m not honest about who I am.

He concluded by saying that actors have amazing opportunities and that:

This aspect alone in my mind is well worth the tradeoff of being labeled a “celebrity” with a “fan”base.

To that I say – awesome, you should go be famous. Enjoy.

And, if after this you still find me to be an exploitive hypocrite who was wrong to leave my job – that’s okay. Luckily there are lots of other things that you can read on the internet.

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My Elephant Journal article and meditation book recommendations

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Hello, everyone!

I wanted to share my brand new article which was just published in Elephant Journal – Learning to be Still: Lessons from a Former Child Actor.  I write about my experiences with anxiety, therapy and finally learning to find a little peace.

I’ve had many people write me to say that they have issues with anxiety, too, and I’d love to offer a little more information about meditation for anyone who might be interested.

First of all, I know that some of you roll your eyes when you hear the word “meditation.” Maybe you have zero desire to be a dread-locked hippie, burning pachouli incense and randomly using Sanskrit  - you just want to chill out a little. That’s totally fine. Books #1-3 on the list have very little woo-woo shit at all!

But, if you are down with the Dharma, there are some books here that get a little more into the spiritual history of meditation and use words like Sangha and Buddha-nature. You’ll get a little more of that in books #3-5.

But all the books here have practical advice in managing panic attacks and anxiety. Most of them sit on my bedside table and have gotten me though some tough times.

Happy reading and most of all, just remember to breathe!

1.    Wherever You Go, There You Are – Jon Kabat-Zinn Ph.D: He’s a molecular biologist, you can’t get much more straight shooting than that. He’s reasonable, logical, and he has an entire center dedicated to the PROVEN medical benefits of meditation (or mindfulness, as he calls it, so that people don’t get intimidated).  I like everything the man has written.

2.    The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook – Edmund J. Bourne: This is the first book my therapist started me off with. It has clear directions for anxiety reducing techniques and short writing exercises.

3.    Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation – Sharon Salzberg: I love this because it’s a 28 day program that comes with a CD of 15 minute guided meditations.

4.    After the Ecstasy, the Laundry – Jack Kornfield: Besides that it’s an awesome title, this book has some great thoughts on waking up to our life.

5.    Peace is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life  - Thich Nhat Hanh: He is a beautiful writer and puts complex ideas into simple to understand concepts.

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Reader question: on motivation, writing and everything else

write

I recently received an email from a guy named David who was looking for some writing advice. He enjoys writing (and judging by the email, the dude has some serious talent) but he has been feeling a little stuck.

The idea of me giving writing advice makes me squirm. I’ve never taken a writing class, not in high school (which I rarely attended since I spent most of my adolescence working on movies) and not later in life when I finally got around to going to college in my late 20s. I’ve never studied writing, other than reading a ridiculous amount of books. I was nervous recently when I was chatting with someone who taught literature. I was worried he was going to try to talk to me about writing and I’m not really that kind of polished, studied, technically proficient writer.

I write from my heart. I never remember if I want a colon or a semi-colon.  I use the word “fuck” when it seems advantageous.

That being said, David sounds cool and I wanted to answer his question which was basically – Writing is hard. How do you do it?

Writing IS hard. Because you are generally pouring your soul onto the page and then asking any literate person who walks by - Hey…would you be interested in judging the contents of my essential being?

It feels like peeling off your eyelids.

But for whatever reason, I have to do it. Have to. If I don’t write for a few days I get twitchy and weird. So, I write.

For me, the essentials of writing come down to the following three things. But these things are not writer specific, I realized. I’ll use the word writing here, but just replace it with whatever you are interested in pursuing, and I think it’ll still be fairly valid.

Good fences make good writing

For me, being creative is all about setting boundaries. I need time. If I’m sitting down for 15 minutes once a month and expecting to write like Jonathan Franzen, I’m in trouble. I write every weekday from 8 AM – noon. I don’t answer the phone (sorry, Mom) and I put off everything else until the afternoon. Unloading the dishwasher or taking the car for an oil change happens later. It’s not always perfect – sometimes the dentist can only see me at 10 AM and I have to rearrange things. But 95% of the time, between the hours of 8-12, I’m writing. I thrive with a schedule and a routine.

That being said, I’m extraordinarily blessed to have the time I have. I am married to someone who is incredibly supportive and understanding of my chosen profession and we don’t have kids. I understand that not everyone can carve out 4 hours a day, so, look at what works for you. Maybe it’s 2 hours every Sunday night after everyone has gone to sleep. Maybe it’s everyday for 10 minutes while you wait for carpool. Whatever works for you, build a big fence around that time and fight like hell to defend it.

The Shitty First Draft

The Post-it note on my computer reads – Write Anyway. It compels me to write when I am not inspired, when it is raining, when House Hunters International is on and when every word reads like compete and utter garbage. That Post-it note will not accept any of my excuses. The Shitty First Draft is essential, it just needs to be put on paper. Because within all that crap, there will be the tiniest nugget of something that is workable. The rewriting is where the art is. That’s where you’ll uncover the truth and beauty.

There’s a lot of talk about writer’s block. I believe that only happens if you give in and stop writing. I’ve never had writer’s block because I refuse to stop writing. I’ve written some truly horrible stuff, including pages about how miserable this is because I don’t know what to write about. But I NEVER stop writing. Writing is a muscle that can atrophy very quickly if it’s not used. So, forget the idea of having to be inspired to create. Just sit down and write words. Some of them are bound to be inspired, regardless.

Find some tough love (but not in that order)

It is so beneficial to have someone who is both your cheerleader and fresh pair of eyes. My husband has been my first reader for years now. Honestly, this dynamic started out a little rocky. He would read something, say really nice things and try to help. In response,  I would be so sensitive that I would ignore the complements, feel offended by his help, cry and throw pens. It took us a while to get this part of the relationship down, but we’re a good team now. He’s great at giving me feedback that is both kind and honest. He’s become an expert in the support/critique combo.

“I love you/this sentence isn’t funny.”

“You’re a great writer/this paragraph doesn’t make any sense.”

Support/critique needs to come in equal doses, and it’s super helpful if the support part comes first. And I’ve gotten better at hearing both the adoration and suggestions, even though I retain the right to ignore the latter.

Your first reader can be a friend, teacher, mentor, writing group, someone who can both hold your hand and slap some sense into you. If you go the route I did, be warned that it adds an extra layer of challenge if your first reader is also someone who you are sleeping with – but it’s certainly possible. Make sure you choose your reader wisely because showing your work while it is still in progress is really scary and vulnerable. Choose someone who understands the gravity of that responsibility and if they don’t totally get it – explain it to them.

Yes, dear David, you are right. Writing is hard. But let’s face it: it’s not coal mining or working a tobacco field. It’s creating a world on paper. It’s connecting with others though making emotion tangible. It’s freaking MAGIC.

So just write anyway.

And thanks for asking.

~Lisa

P.S. You wondered if I required any Liquid Inspiration to write – and the answer is yes. I simply cannot write without my extra-large mug of decaf tea.

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Words in other places: HelloGiggles

HelloGiggles

Happy Sunday, everyone!

Just a quick note with some exciting news: I am now a contributing writer for Zooey Deschanel’s website, HelloGiggles!

You can check out my first article:  5 Pointless Skills I Learned as a Child Actor

Thanks, as always, for all your support!!
~Lisa

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