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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Quiet Time

Believe it or not, my favorite time of day is just before dawn, when I have the courtyard outside the library all to myself, and an hour and a half to do whatever I please. Sometimes I read. Sometimes I write. Sometimes I lay my head down on the table and stay that way until the sun comes up. Regardless, it’s my time to do whatever I want to do, and that kind of freedom is worth its weight in gold.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Round and Round and Round We Go

My hometown has this unnerving obsession with circles. If you go downtown, you see them EVERYWHERE, sometimes three or four in a row, and all I can think of every time I swing around one is how Kingsport's obsession with circles is not unlike Angela's obsession with rosettes on season 3 of Project Runway. It's like the city itself is cocking its hip, going, "And these are my signature circles. I'm, like, SO INTO THEM RIGHT NOW."



Thursday, September 9, 2010

Are you an Approval Junkie?

Take this quiz and find out!

  1. You fall completely in love with a yellow faux-leather jacket at the mall. Not only is it your size, it's also on sale.  What do you do?

    1. call your best friend immediately and ask her what she thinks. If she likes it, you'll buy it.
    2. call your best friend immediately and ask her what she thinks. If she hates it, you'll buy it.
    3. call your best friend immediately and tell her about the new yellow faux-leather jacket you just bought.
  2. Your "dream agent" has declared young adult alien romances (like the one you've been working on for the past 2 years) dead in the water. With aliens out, he predicts were-kitteh mockumentaries will be the Next Big Thing. You:

    1. spend the next six months transforming your young adult alien romance into young adult were-kitteh mockumentary. He's a professional, after all, and you trust his opinion.
    2. scrap everything and spend the next six months using it as an example of how people like him are killing the publishing industry. He's a professional, after all. What does he know?
    3. shrug it off and keep on trucking. Good books never go out of style, and if he doesn't want it, someone else will.
  3. You hear through the grapevine that a girl you work with has been running you down behind your back. While some of the accusations are true (and others not so much), they're taken out of context to make her look good and you look bad. You:

    1. buy her coffee for a month in an attempt to change her opinion of you, and when that doesn't work, avoid her at all costs.
    2. remind her that two can play this game by outing her for being the talentless, two-faced hack you both know she is.
    3. accept that not everyone is going to like you and move on. If she's really as venomous as she seems, it's only a matter of time before others figure it out, too.
  4. You have an idea for a new project. But before you get started, you want to:

    1. run it by your mother, brother, sister, priest, therapist, critique partner, critique group, Facebook friends, twitter followers, blog subscribers, members of every mailing list you belong to, and so on, and so forth
    2. make sure it hasn't been popularized by someone else. Seriously, how embarrassing would that be?
    3. make a few notes, maybe even an outline or to do list, so you can get a feel of how to best execute it
  5. You catch yourself stretching the truth about your accomplishments:

    1. Sometimes
    2. Always
    3. Never

You're done!  Time to tally your answers!

If you scored:

Mostly As
Step away from the Kool Aid! When it comes to approval, you'll do just about anything to score your next fix. Too bad your obsessive-compulsive people-pleasing leaves you feeling even worse than before.

How to kick the habit: as Polonius once said, 'to thine own self be true.' Whenever you find yourself seeking approval from outside sources, take a mental health moment and ask yourself why. You may be surprised at the answer.

Mostly Bs
If apathy were a superpower, you'd have the world by the balls.  Or at least, that's what you want people to think. Truth is, you're as insecure and approval-addicted as everyone else, you're just too scared to admit it.

How to break the ice: confession is good for the soul, so cut the crap and fess up. Who knows? The more you give a damn about others, the more they may give a damn about you.

Mostly Cs
You're calm, cool, and collected...and maybe a little too well-adjusted.  Sure, you have the occasional bouts of self-doubt, but for the most part, you own your awesomeness.  Way to go, kiddo.

How to stay the course: keep your eyes on the prize. According to mental toughness guru Steve Siebold, “most middle-class performers - the average person - spend far too much time focused on their fears in an attempt to prepare for the worst. World-class performers develop a laser-like focus on their excruciatingly detailed, emotionally charged vision."

(Just like Payson Keeler!)

That's it!  How'd you do?




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