First Person Problems

Day 14

It’s funny sometimes how we think about ourselves. What our image is and what reality is. I tell my students to pay attention to what characters do and say and, when possible, notice when it doesn’t vibe with the character’s  thoughts in first person. To grow their thinking about why that disconnect exists. If the character thinks this but does that… If they say this but think that… If their actions for most of the story don’t match with what they say to this particular minor character, or if behaviors don’t match what we as the (lucky lucky) reader get to see inside their minds as virtual mind readers thanks to POV. 

If you’ve read, like, a sentence of mine you know I don’t have a super high self image. At least that’s what I feel permeates from me like a rummy’s skin after a weeklong bender. Lots of us who are aware of having self-esteem issues consider the possibility that reality is probably not as bad as we make it. Right? Maybe people have told you that you should be easier on yourself and that you have good quality you overlook. Maybe they even list them for you. And perhaps you’re not getting that from me. Maybe, instead, you believe I’m a self-centered narcissist. I try to tout positivity when possible so maybe that translates as chest-puffing? 

It takes confidence, historically, to fill in the blanks that plague me. I work on that. But then I almost immediately consider the double-edged sword as coming off as cocky. My entire friend group had a blast in high school and college, as far as being “successful” with the ladies. Confidence, among other things, were key. They had it in spades. “Smash and grab”, but in reverse, is a saying that comes to mind. “Hit and run” is another. It also always struck me that many of them were extremely romance-averse. Something positive-seeming to me that, unfortunately, also plagued me. I was the hetero gay best friend to all the girls in our group who all came to me for advice wilst doing that almost incestuous dating thing in friend groups where everyone kind of samples each other. A few of them wound up married and are still very happy by the way, so I don’t begrudge them. It doesn’t change the fact that while I was helping the girls, and thereby helping my uber confident guy friends, I was simultaneously in love with all of them at some point, just wishing I was on the other side of these conversations. 

Which brings us to my second point, I guess. Which is maybe even more apparent by reading me. I’m sort of coming to terms with the notion that I’m a bit of a drama queen. Especially when it comes to writing. This stuff, texts, the novellas in my mind that keep me up way too long at night and get deleted well before any sort of hard copy publication. Probably thankfully. In my head, all these years, I have always considered it a smart approach to open communication. I try and write in a way that hits all important aspects of the task at hand. Even with feelings. Especially with feelings. But it sometimes reflects back to me as twisting. Manipulation. What I see as vulnerability and truth boomerangs back as brain-bleeding neediness. 

Basically, if you read my stuff sometimes, or if you know me personally? I’m saying I know I am at a point in life where I am becoming aware, and am seeking out steps to align my message with my reality. And yes, I see the irony in writing about it as if anyone cares. I said I was seeking out steps, not that I actually knew what any of them were. I have, finally, noticed that what I think is inside doesn’t always vibe with what is shown. I honestly think I’m transparent. To the point of being absurdly simple. But when I sometimes hear what others actually hear, or when their actions in response to my believed truth make it obvious that my intention was somehow lost in translation? I need to fix something about me. Part of that is going to be to just shut up. Hard in a writing challenge like this, but maybe I’ll scale back on baring my soul in simple blog posts. Haha. We all have our things. Mine is to stop talking, and just focus on the doing. Let my actions speak for me. There are some great stories told, with great clarity, from the 3rd person. I think the people closest to me, the other characters in my book, are about over my POV. 

“They can call me crazy if I fail

All the chance that I need

Is one-in-a-million and they can call me brilliant

If I succeed

Gravity is nothing to me

Moving at the speed of sound

I’m just gonna get my feet wet

Until I drown”

One thought on “First Person Problems

  1. It sounds like you’re pretty hard on yourself. My thought is, don’t edit your writing before you even write it! You never know where it will lead you and you don’t have share anything – it’s up to you. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

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