Paula-Loves-Marla's Blog

Observations about Art, Movies, Books, etc.

Back to Writing and Shaking Off the Barb

You know, it’s a funny thing about me but I can get a hundred compliments and one criticism and the only thing that will stick with me is that one negative comment. I think I am not alone in this sensitivity and I’m sure there are many self-help books out there to help people knock that off. Maybe one of these days I’ll even read one of ‘em.

If you’ll notice on my writing history on this blog, there’s a big chunk of time where I wrote nothing. The last entry (before this recent spate of posts) was mid-January. I was on fire during the holidays and on into the new year. It seemed like I had good ideas for writing topics jumping into my head all the time. I got a little book to write them all down in and it gave me such joy to check each idea off as I developed it into a post and hit that publish button.

Then I was having a casual conversation with some co-workers and someone said playfully and without malice “Oh, you’re just wasting your time.” It was only a little sting and I took it knowing she meant no harm. I even wrote several more posts after that day; ones that I thought were well written, funny (or at least clever) and enjoyable to write, but you know, that comment started to really bother me.

What if she was right? What if the whole thing was pointless and only mildly entertaining to family and a few close friends forever? Slowly I started to lose the joy of writing (which was the whole point of starting the blog in the first place). What if people outside my circle visited my site and thought what I wrote was pointless or stupid or worthless? I let this innocent little barb work its way deeper and deeper into my skin until I stopped writing altogether. Even though I had gotten a ton of positive feedback on my posts, I let this one tiny hurt derail me for a month and a half.

That is tragic. And for a month of my time, other than some e-mails, I have written nothing creative at all and that truly was a waste of time.

What sort of got me back on track was that I remembered when I was younger there was a summer when my mother was taking a class in order to earn her master’s degree and she had to leave before I woke up in order to get to school on time. Every morning she’d leave a funny poem on the toilet lid for me to find. I’ve still got them tucked away somewhere because they were truly priceless and funny.

Anyway, I started to write little four line poems here at the office to remind people to join the MegaMillions pool. It was fun and made people laugh. More importantly, it got me back on track doing something I love, which is writing.

For now I am back from the abyss and will try really hard to disregard the little barbs that come my way and focus on the good stuff.

Thanks for stopping by!

~Paula

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One thought on “Back to Writing and Shaking Off the Barb

  1. Alexa on said:

    Don’t take what your coworker said to heart! You are NOT wasting your time. You just might write that book one day, and use some of this… and if not, it’s great practice! You have a gift. 🙂

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