Friday, December 01, 2006


I was standing in front of the mirror this morning brushing my hair before I jumped into the shower. It was the perfect pose for admiration, very flattering. And my first thought was, "That is a much better body than you think it is." It's soft and round and generous and I rarely look at myself like that. I'm usually critical of the excess weight, the effects of gravity and scars of life.

I stripped the bathroom last night in preparation for this weekend's paint job. With so little to distract me, my focus naturally gravitated to the mirror. Such a clear unobstructed view made me look at myself differently. Less critically.

As writers we're critical people. We're always trying to improve our projects, our style, our craft. Critique groups were formed for that very purpose. Critique, critical and criticize have the same root. And we sometimes make the mistake of thinking they're all the same thing. We focus so much on what doesn't work that we ignore what does. As a result, we occasionally ruin the good stuff when we're fixing the bad.

My body and I have had our differences over the years. I'm not as good to it as I should be. I focus on the negative, on the ways it has let me down when in reality I'm blessed with this body. It gets me where I need to go, allows me to express myself in the ways I most desire and is reasonably attractive in the process.

My writing is the same. It tells a good story, is reasonably entertaining and allows me to express myself in the ways I most desire.

Today, I'm going to appreciate all that works well; not just in my writing or my body, but my life as well. Be less critical, and let my attitude mirror my life.

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