“Loud, Ugly, Wild, Free” by Veronica Roth
For me, it doesn’t really help to decide to write a shitty first draft and let that be the end of it, because it goes completely against my nature and the core of my person— it’s too hard for me, in other words, to just say “oh well. It’s going to be bad.” That means traveling too far away from who I am.
I think, instead, that I should try to make it as BIG and as LOUD and as CRAZY as possible. Just like in voice lessons, when I was honking out those notes as loudly and as comically ugly as possible, like a goose with a throat infection, and somehow, I found my way to something more beautiful. The trick for those of us who are such strong perfectionists that we can’t even conceive of writing something deeply flawed on purpose is not embracing error but embracing something else: freedom.
“Why Lady-On-Lady Hate Makes Me Sad” by S.E. Sinkhorn
I couldn’t see this for what it was when I was living it, but now that I’m more removed (and frankly way more involved in social issues and being a real live woman), I see this for what it is. It’s internalized misogyny, ladies. Not only that, it’s self-hatred. When you truly believe that ALL or MOST or even MANY other women are *insert all negative stereotypes about women here* and that you alone are unique because you are more “like a guy” and like more “guy” stuff, which is better and more interesting than “girl” stuff? You are hating your own sex/gender. You are divorcing yourself from anything that might be considered feminine and seeking approval from men in the context of maleness. You’re saying “even though I identify as a woman, I’m not like a WOMAN-woman. I’m like a *cool* woman who likes non-womanly things.”
“Things I’ve Learned” by MJ Levy (a college classmate & friend)
- The fear of humiliation is a powerful motivator, but it can’t be the only motivator.
- Your first idea is probably the wrong one, but even if it isn’t, you have to prove it.
- Your uncertainties are just as valuable as your certainties.
- Completely objective criticism is impossible, but try.
- Finding the right problem to solve is harder than solving the problem itself.