My First Workshop

I don’t know if this is apparent to anyone, but I actually have never taken a formal writing class.

All of my writing is trained through research papers and that bullshit regurgitation they make you do before you’re old enough to write research papers.

This semester I took a creative non-fiction course. For those unfamiliar with the genre it’s like literary blogging, but without the computer and less pictures.

The way the course works is you read some similar works to what you’ll be creating, then you write a piece and bring it to class where you read it aloud and everyone critiques you.

I was slotted to go first yesterday but I pulled a Hannah Horvath and was super late for class which set a mood of greater anxiety.

Being work shopped is like being walked up to a stage where you know everyone is going to be throwing rocks at you, but when you get there it turns out their more hard foam, rather than rocks. It’s uncomfortable, but after it’s over you feel a little bit stronger for having sat through it.

For me there are few bigger fears than someone outright telling me my writing sucks. Mostly because if I’m not decent at it, then I’m not sure what I’m working for in life anymore.

If we’re being honest, after people started critiquing my work my face turned bright red and I thought for a moment I would cry.

I’m not normally a particularly sensitive person about school work and I am a shocking good speech giver, but having someone read my “story” and then rip it apart was hard.

Turns out I have a lot of growing to do as a creative writer.

However, several people compared me to David Sedaris so I’m going to hold close to that highest of high compliments and keep working.

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DC

I’m into the second month of my second to last semester, knee deep in snow and freshly returned from DC.

How’re you all doing?

If you’re interested in seeing photos from this past weekend you should check my Instagram out. I’ll warn you now there are no artsy selfies near the Washington Monument.

I was hosted by a lovely and dear friend who actually was on the road trip with me this sumer. (You should also check out her website)

Thanks to her I spent the weekend drinking wine and meeting super impressive women.

I’m going to be honest. Sitting a bit hungover, outside Open City Cafe on Saturday morning while waiting for brunch and meeting someone who started her introduction around the lines of “Sorry I’m late. I just got published in Al Jazeera America . . . ” and then I stopped listening for a second because I had to scoop my jaw off the floor.

To keep this blog post crisp and small, all I’m going to say is that there is a tendency for not just men, but other women to be really intimidated by strong, smart women. There is also a tendency to feel inferior.

Suddenly you’re rethinking every choice you’ve made since exiting the womb.

In this situation you’re really left with two choices:

You can just spiral into a cold silence because you feel inferior and have nothing to say.

Or you can be proud not only of what you have accomplished, but also what others have accomplished, learn something and be inspired.

I don’t think I’ll be writing OpEds for The Times any time soon, publishing an album this year, moving to China, saving a life or even go to grad school and that’s ok.

But I did manage to set my alarm an hour earlier than usual, get some yoga in before work and write a blog post so for today, I’m doing ok.

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