Learned the Hard Way. What’s a lesson you learned the hard way? Write about it for 15 today.
I’ve had big feet my entire life. I always hated them, especially when I was young and towering over all my petite little 6th grade friends. I used to lie on my bed with my legs dangled over my head and stare at my giant feet, cursing them, praying for them to shrink. In ballet class I tripped over my long toes while my friends spun across the room.
I recently discovered that writing in a voice that is not my own is like trying to wear shoes that are too sizes too small. I learned that the hard way. I thought shoving my 10.5 foot into 8.5 size shoes would make me more successful….8.5 seemed so much more popular and had a bigger audience and I was sure that it wouldn’t hurt to cramp my toes for a little while, maybe I could even make my feet fit if I tried hard enough.
I tried hard. I wrote 3 assignments in a voice that was more scientific and less personal than I was used to. I researched like crazy to learn all I could about one specific topic that was beyond my capabilities, and in the end, not good enough for the editor. The editor wanted exclamation points and “gee wizes” and I couldn’t write that way without sounding like my toes were pinched. The story came out sounding like someone else, not me.
After a few weeks of stress and a couple sleepless nights, I learned that I like my big feet just fine. I may have a smaller selection of shoes (readers) to shop from (write for), but when I find the right fit, it feels really, really good.