Back on January 1st I decided I’d sign up for NaJoWriMo for the month. It’s a month-long series of prompts about different themes. The theme I chose was “Unleashing Your Creative Mind Through Journal Writing.” I did the first two prompts then realized there was no way I could keep up with it as we were going back east to see our grandkids. I didn’t quit, however. I just put it on the shelf till I got back and had myself sorted out. (Well I’m back, not sure about the sorted out thing…) I have nearly all the prompts now, so I’m fixin’ to make one day a week NaJoWriMo day. Probably not Tuesdays, but you’re getting it today this week.
NaJoWriMo Day 3
Letter to Your Inner Critic
Continuing on the theme of “Unleashing Your Creative Mind Through Journal Writing,” write a letter to your inner critic, that voice that whispers to you when think about wanting to do something creative or different. Think about when you heard the voice before and what it said to you. Talk back to it the form of a letter or a dialogue between you and the critic.
To M.I. Critic:
It has finally occurred to me after the last two years and four months spent engaging you in some difficult conversations in the Sandbox, that you and I are NEVER going to see eye-to-eye about anything. It’s obvious to me that nothing I do pleases you. Not the way I talk, the way I dress, what I eat, how I keep the house, yadah, yadah, yadah…
And I’m tired of your absolute insistence that I have no right to take care of myself, to meet my own needs. I’ve discovered it’s a bald-faced lie that I must always put others first. I’ve been learning these last twenty eight months that if I DON’T put me first some times, I’m going to run out of gas and not be able to take care of anyone.
And as far as my writing endeavors are concerned, what the hell makes YOU such an authority? Did you ever write anything? NO! You’ve been too busy flapping your gums at me and making sure I get every little jot and tittle right. Does it have a theme? A beginning, end, and middle? Is it polished? Is the grammar correct? Well what about the words themselves??? Eh???
I may not be a great writer, but then I never set out to be the next Harper Lee, Maya Angelou, or Ernest Hemingway (though I admit I wouldn’t mind writing like Mark Twain). I just have a lot of words piling up inside me, and I feel so much better when I’m not constipated with unspoken feelings and ideas. THOSE are the things that are most important to me. Not how bloomin’ wonderful the writing is.
Add to that my great need to connect with others. You would have me feel stupid about what I’ve written (especially the poetry) and run and hide until my embarrassment has blown over. You don’t like it that I’m pushing through your criticism and at least getting some words down on paper or the internet. You’re jealous! And you wish to make ME feel small so you can feel better about yourself.
But the one thing I’ve hated about you the most is the way you have goaded me to the point where even when I’m just wanting to do something nice for someone for the sake of doing something nice, I continually doubt my motives. It’s hard to hear myself think over your shouting at me, “You’re not the sweet person you think you are!!!” And I’ve had enough!
So as of yesterday, when I finally realized you’ve been leading me around by the nose about things like “living in the moment” and all manner of ideas floating around on the blogs, I have had your pink slip made up, and I am booting your arse our of my head! And don’t the door hit you in said arse on the way out!!! YOU are TERMINATED! But I’LL be BACK!!!