Cheesy, lovey-dovey, flowery?
Daggers to my heart. Not really.
I just got my first round of edits for a piece I recently wrote. The writing is for a site that I deem in high regards and am completely humbled to get to crash the party. Spilling my guts on my blog for my audience (my mom for sure, my husband and I think my brother and sister) isn’t really putting myself out there. But when I submit something for somebody who expects something of me, I start feeling like a hack. Especially when they use the word “cheesy” to describe my writing.
Oh, goody! What do you know, I have a cheesy, lovey-dovey and flowery story that relates to this very topic!
Way back in my college days, I had an English 102 professor who encouraged my writing. I used to skip class (KIDS! Don’t skip class!) and sit right out front in the English building lobby on this old wooden bench that was kind of like an old salvaged pew. I felt like I was still in class because I was in the English building and I still got up and got myself dressed and on time…to sit on the bench outside of class (can you just see the rebellious teenage me?). I just couldn’t stand the class. I was bored. So, I sat on the bench and I wrote. Our professor said we could turn in five “journal” type assignments in lieu of one response paper. Journal being that I wrote whatever the heck I wanted to write and response paper meaning that I had to read something and then respond to it. I jumped at the opportunity to journal.
When I turned in my first journal assignment and then my second, my professor asked me if I had ever considered taking a Creative Writing class and that I should really look into that. Being 18 and knowing everything, I shrugged my shoulders and said “ok, sure” and then did nothing to look into Creative Writing or anything else that required me to be in the English building.
When my professor found out that I was sitting on the bench outside the classroom to write my journal entries, she struck up a deal with me. I could turn in as many journal entries as I wanted in exchange for sitting right outside the class. We had a deal. I ended up getting an “A” in the class but instead of pursuing Creative Writing, I got a degree in Psychology. Close enough.
What is my freaking point anyway? I guess my point is that we don’t always listen to those who can see our potential AND, more importantly AND, getting criticism – constructive criticism – means that you have something there. You have talent, potential, heart, promise. Whatever you want to call it.
The editor finished the e-mail telling me what they liked about the piece and what I did right and finally, that I have “promise.” You know which part I am holding on to?
That very last sentence “I think you have promise.”
p.s. remind me to tell you the story about my Calculus teacher who threw grading parties where he ordered pizza and let us grade our own papers. I got a “B” in that class.
Categories: All The Rest