The Art of Pretending Awesome
I’ve never been a good actress. I’m most known for telling it like it is and being a straight shooter. It runs in my family. None of us mince words, beat around the bush, or are good at pretending everything is awesome when it’s not.
I have a lot of writer, musician, and artist friends who’ve gotten rather good at the art of pretending awesome. That’s where you act as if your life is straight out of a fairy tale 24/7 and everything is perfect and peachy keen. Or that nothing bothers you or upsets you. Or that your life has no bumps in the road.
A successful writing friend told me some years back that if I wanted to really entrance my reading public, I needed to put on my writer’s hat and become the thing I hated the most, especially in the writers I love: a flat, boring, fake, stock character among the world of writers.
I tried doing it. I did. I swear I did, but quite frankly trying to be picture perfect for my reading public is exhausting. See, at the beginning of this year I made a pact with myself to NOT rant or post preachy or rather blunt opinions in this blog. Looking back through my blog for 2013 earlier tonight, there were several months I succeeded in this goal. They were incredibly BORING months, but all the blog posts were saccharine, sweet, dull, lifeless — just like you’d expect from a fake, stock character wearing a writer’s hat. Other months — I didn’t do so well at all, but the blog was rather lively and bustling with activity from readers. LOL!
That’s when it occurred to me that one of the things that drives me to blog are the things that drive me nuts, or opinions I disagree with, or my urge to refute an untruth. This is what drives a lot of people up onto the soap box. This is my little corner of the web and I’ve never had readers complain about my rants. Most seem to enjoy them, or laugh at them actually.
I’ve been told my rants are what make readers find me human and approachable. Which is nice. I never want to become one of those writers who readers wonder if they have a sense of humor let alone whether or not they use the toilet just like everyone else.
I can’t help but rant, bitch, or blog about the things that angrify (my husband’s word, not mine) me. Just like all of you reading this, I’m a human being with feelings, emotions and things that irk me. I can’t pretend to be unaffected and happy 24/7. It’s unnatural for me to be Pollyanna. It’s exhausting to pretend awesome! If I did hold everything back, opinions and all, I’d probably give myself some debilitating disease. I was raised to speak my mind and I’ve always spoken my mind. I really can’t imagine why I’d suddenly stop now.
Don’t get me wrong — for the most part, I’m very happy. I have a wonderful husband who I love. I have a family I adore. I have friends who are brilliant, kind, beautiful, and funny. I have pets who make me laugh. I get to do what I love for a living. But even in never-never land, there are bumps in the road. Normal, everyday, frustrating bumps. I don’t focus on the bumps (or I try not to), but they’re there and I have no desire to hide them from my readers.
Yes — sometimes I preach. I find that most of the time I’m preaching to the choir because the majority of all the wonderful people who read this blog share my views on so many things. Especially when it comes to my frustrations with the occult world and the writing world.
Writing about my frustration helps me get it out, get over it, and move on.
“So buy a journal and keep that negativity to yourself!” some might say. I suppose you have a point. Mind you I do keep a private journal for my most toxic feelings
Usually when I have something to address publicly, there’s a reason for it. Either I think sharing my frustration about something in the writing world will help other writers down the road, or I feel that sharing my frustrations with occult related things helps me get it out of my system. Oftentimes when I’m ranting it’s about associations, bad publishers, and occult related things. LOL! Yes, I have ranted on poorly published indie books and bad indie covers, but really those were kind of instructional. I know people can do better.
One thing remains constant: my posts always give me the “result” I’m looking for, whether it’s a response, a shoulder, or a note just to say, “Hey, your post on bad publishers really helped me.” or “Your rant on bad cover art really helped me avoid a bad cover choice.”
I get these kinds of responses to my posts more often than most people realize. Usually via email, sometimes in the comments.
I have a right to my opinion, even if its preachy. Readers have a right to think I’m a crazy ranty lady, or gorgeously flawed and human. Their choice.
Sure – my blog isn’t going to attract the Holly Hobby’s of the world, but then it isn’t meant to. In the meantime, I will try to keep things positive and upbeat here MOST of the time. But if I fail, as I undoubtedly will, please know that it’s because I’ve never been good at keeping my opinion to myself. 🙂