Monday, October 12, 2009


Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life.

-Anne Lamott

As I have written before, in my quest to become a better writer, I joined a local writing group called The Writing Mamas. The class caters to mothers and creates a warm, safe place where you can write, share your writing, help one another make contacts, and get published. It is perfect for me right now. The class acts as a support group, creative outlet, and infuser of inspiration.

It is a good place to hone your skills by getting critiqued in a gentle way. I need some help in this regard although it seems I am only pointed in a direction. I think I need to work on my sentence structure and on my style. It is one of those things that is only half-taught, as far as I can see. I keep looking for books to help me. I am currently reading Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott, which I am thoroughly enjoying, but it seems more catered to fiction writers and I am trying to work on nonfiction articles and essays.

I want my writing to flow better. It is amazing how much work goes into a piece of writing. It never fails to leave me in awe, after I read something simple and elegant, realizing how much the author must have worked shaping her thoughts into elegant paragraphs. That is what I am striving for in my writing: simple, elegant and clear writing still voluptuous with feeling and imagery.

In any case, I am inspired and hopeful and enjoying those feelings. I know they are fleeting and that the most important thing is to be consistent. Consistent, moderate effort seems to be the theme of my thirties, an anecdote to the all or nothing of my twenties, and hopefully the underpinnings of a modicum of success in my forties. At least that is the way I am looking at it now.

I am going to work a little more on the writing for class last night and will publish it here tomorrow.


Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I can't wait to read what you come up with.

For me, a strong voice is what I really love in a writer--it is work to develop that.

Life As I Know It said...

good for you! that class sounds perfect. I wonder if there is anything like that around here.
Keep writing!!!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

How wonderful for you to find a group! I think the best part is having an audience for your work--that will help you keep after it!