Weekend updates

Yesterday I was at Writer Unboxed, sharing some thoughts on juggling. (Sort of.) I’d love if you hopped over and gave it a read.

In the end, I couldn’t make this line fit into the post, but I wanted to share it here:

Writing is unlike many professions in many ways. But it is exactly like most professions in this one very important way: You will get better the longer and harder you try.

There is nothing weird or shameful about that.

As a society, we tend to give birthday cards, send holiday greetings, and mail gifts or notes when we travel. But what about the rest of the year? The little celebrations, or the unexpected times of difficulty? What about my favorite occasion: no reason at all?

In college, I constantly left random notes for people in my hall. I tried to highlight things they had done that made me smile, or tell something cheerful if I knew they were down. This was doubly true when I became an RA.

This is a bit harder to do in “real life” (i.e., after you’ve graduated). Okay, not harder, but perhaps considered weirder. Fortunately I don’t mind being a little unconventional.

To that end, Michael’s has these dollar bins that I love. There are always stationery sets (8 cards and matching envelopes) in varying designs, and I try to pick up a couple nice-looking, all-purpose ones to have on hand.

Also, a friend recently gave me a box of a hundred or so postcards, each depicting a different old book cover. (They mostly look the same.) I like to match the titles to the reason or person I’m sending them for. “Vile Bodies” as a get well card, “The Odyssey” as congratulations on a new job.

Like I said, I don’t mind being a little weird.

Football. I cannot believe how much I’ve come to love this game. Flag, fantasy, and pro. I’ll have to write a post/column on it sometime. For now, I’ll just say that even though the Texans lost by basically giving our opponents 17 out of their 20 points today — grumble grumble — overall it was a good football year for me and my teams. And from now until August, I’ll be running on dreams of an even bigger, brighter next year.

10 responses to “Weekend updates”

  1. gingermandy Avatar

    i was just thinking about how i need to have a stash of cards/thank you notes/etc around because you never know when you’ll want or need to send one. i don’t think it’s weird at all to send them “just because,” even if the person thinks you’re a weirdo, you still made them smile. :)

  2. Sonje Avatar

    Football is fantastic, and there have been some AMAZING games these last two weekends! I’m so sad that there are only three games left in the season. One of the main reason I picked up watching soccer was so I’d have a little cushion to land on when the NFL season is over.

    Sending people random cards is fun, and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like receiving them. One of the best things about the December holidays is actually getting handwritten cards from people. It’s such a rarity these days!

  3. Shari Avatar

    I love that line about writing – it’s so very true, and such a good reminder that we should always keep with us.

    Also – completely agreed about those little gestures. I love sending random notes to people in the hopes that it’ll make them smile. There is nothing better than brightening someone’s day :)

  4. Juliann Wetz Avatar

    I love to stock up at Michael’s, too. I’m such a paper hoarder! I love buying notecards and journals. This year I’m trying to make more effort to send out notes.

    I was inspired by Jon Kralik’s book “365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Daily Gratitude Changed My Life” in which he tried to write thank you cards every day. I used to do that so much more than I do now. I’d like to get back into the habit. You just reminded me again. It’s like I got a little note from you, urging me to do so. :)

  5. Jon Avatar

    That’s great you send out handwritten cards. It’s funny, I tend to delete or not read so many emails, tweets, fb messages, but I’ll pretty much keep a card for the rest of my life.

  6. Aisha Avatar

    Aw I have a bunch of blank postcards I was gonna get rid of, I can give them to you the next time I see you if you want em :)

  7. Les Avatar

    Definitely not a football fan over here although I think Todd is trying to convert me. I think sending or giving random cards is a sweet idea though… little things go a long way.

  8. Kristan Avatar

    Oh please don’t remind me how soon I’ll be without. It’s hard enough getting from Sunday to Sunday!

    I used to be a hoarder, haha, but now I prefer to send my lovelies out.

    And yes, I’ve heard about that book and loved the idea. (Couldn’t tell if it was worth actually reading, though.) I don’t think I could commit to every day, but I bet if you average my mailings out over the year, it’s one per week or one per every other week.

    Haha, as long as they’re not fugly! :P

    *sends good luck to Todd*

  9. Em Avatar

    I used to have a “card box” with all sorts of random cards for random occasions and Thinking Of You moments. I need to dust off that sucker and get busy again. There’s really never any excuse for neglecting to share with those you love is there?

  10. Laura Avatar

    Thanks for this post! I am a huge fan a the handwritten letter! They are so much more personal than an e-mail correspondence, and you don’t need an occasion to write them- just the act will brighten up someones day.