ROW80: Inner Critic Smackdown – Bird by Bird and Tweet by Tweet
The White Screen of Death
My blog was stricken by the dreaded White Screen of Death (aka WSOD) last night, so I wasn’t sure if I would be able to do my ROW80 check-in today. The dreaded WSOD happens when you crash the WordPress database. In my case, I tried on an incompatible theme and – yikes – my blog turned into a plain white page for the next 12 hours.
Thanks to an old pal and a new pal (Thanks Doug! Thanks Susan!), all is well, and I learned a valuable lesson. Plus, I was also able to make my most heroic sounding tweet ever: “I was trying on new themes, deleted the culprit & defeated the white screen of death! (Don’t I sound valiant?)”
I haven’t done much since Saturday on my Sinclair Island memoir – unless you count writing in my head so much that I can’t be trusted to operate heavy machinery or fill the bathtub. Does anyone else get kinda spacey when immersed in writing projects?
I did, however, find even more loose pages to transcribe (yea – words!) as well as a book on the history of Sinclair Island I can use for fact checking. (I wasn’t sure if I spelled the Lummi Indian name for the island correctly in my diaries, for instance.)
Inner Critic Smackdown: Bird by Bird and Tweet by Tweet
In Saturday’s ROW80 check-in, I mentioned how my inner critic recently reared her ugly head. I think she’s been working out, too, because she is burly these days. I’m feeling much better after the Twitter replies in response to my writerly angst. Pam Mandel, for instance, sent a tweet suggesting I re-read Anne Lamott’s wonderful writing memoir, Bird by Bird and then, “smack that critic with your book.”
That critic-smacking image is useful! Now, when my inner critic pops up, I just imagine chucking my book at her. I can’t see her face clearly, but the book (hardback, of course, leather-bound) is so big that it takes both hands to throw it. When the book hits my inner critic’s face, she turns into a pile of harmless fluff, like dandelion seeds. Makes me smile every time!
Sadly, I can’t find my copy of Bird by Bird. I may have loaned it out. I did find a couple good blog posts on Anne Lamott’s approach to dealing with one’s inner critic. Charlotte Morganti blogs about Anne Lamott and in her post, What’s the big deal about your inner critic? as does Rachel Friedman in her post, My Inner Critic .
In fact, next time I’m at the book store, I’m gonna look for Rachel Friedman’s travel memoir, The Good Girl’s Guide to Getting Lost: A Memoir of Three Continents, Two Friends, and One Unexpected Adventure as well as Bird by Bird.
The Row80 Linky list: