What’s the Difference?

Writers deal with resistance in multiple forms almost every time they sit down to write.

Fatigue, writer’s block, laziness, criticism, overloaded schedules, day jobs, apathy – all can serve as stumbling blocks that slow down or completely stop your work.

But there is another obstacle that may be even harder to overcome than all the rest.


That nagging voice in the back of your mind that stands in accusation of your work, whispering not-so-sweet somethings to your confidence.

“Who’s going to read your writing, anyway?”

“Who cares about your opinion?”

“What difference does it make if you don’t write today?” (more…)

Pursuit of Pride

As a writing exercise, my friend Scott asked me to name one accomplishment I’m proud of. Being a self-deprecating perfectionist, listing achievements that may cause a swollen ego isn’t exactly my strong suit – I can always point to several things I’d change or do differently to make the thing better next time. To add to the difficulty, I tend to see pride in general as a liability rather than an asset, so I’ve significantly handicapped myself right out of the gate.

In order to get through the exercise, then, I have to adjust the phraseology of the original question. Instead of naming something I’m proud of, let’s see if I can’t at least name some pursuit that I enjoy and am reasonably good at.

On that subject, my wife and I were talking about the intersection of passion and work the other day, and she asked me what I’m passionate about; what do I like doing so much that I’d do it for free; what do I do that can solve problems for others, etc.

I drew a complete blank. (more…)

Politically Incorrect Career Counseling

Jimmy strode toward his high school counselor’s office with a purpose, armed with high test scores and naïve optimism. Today was the day – the day he’d discover what his future would hold. Wealth, fame, accolades – it all hung on the career decisions he would make behind the doors of the humble office ahead. He took a deep breath, squared his shoulders, and opened the door.

“Well, well,” said Mr. Snidely, the counselor. “Good morning, Jimmy! Are you ready for the first day of the rest of your life?”

“Absolutely, Mr. Snidely,” Jimmy said with a smile. “I can’t wait!”

“Good, good. Take a seat there, and we’ll get started.” Jimmy sat on the edge of a cheap plastic chair facing Snidely’s desk. He felt his pulse quicken with anticipation and the promise of a bright future.

“Now, then,” Snidely said, looking over several forms. “Let me just make some preliminary notes here…” He peered through his glasses and spoke under his breath as he checked several boxes. “Career Description: Prostitute.”

“Excuse me?” (more…)

No, Thank You

The other day I was reading a post on Ernie Dempsey’s blog where Ernie discussed the disturbing trend of ingratitude in our society these days. The example he cited was Apple’s recent launch of the iPhone 6, where Apple execs simultaneously gave away rock band U2’s latest album – to every iTunes user on the planet.

On the surface, this seems like a pretty magnanimous gesture, not just for Apple, but more especially for U2. They’re the ones who put in the work to produce an entire album of new music, only to give it away completely free.

Publicity stunt, you say?

Okay, yeah, that’s probably their angle. Apple technology launches are still a pretty big deal worldwide, so this would give U2 heavy exposure to that demographic. What U2 and Apple may not have anticipated was (more…)