“Reading your own material aloud forces you to listen.”
Stephen Ambrose

When I first started blogging back in January 2010; I thought everything I published was a masterpiece. I would smile from ear to ear knowing I just gave the world a literature masterpiece. I figured because of my lyrical rambling I was going to change the world one reader at a time. It wasn’t until I started working on my book “The Life and Mind of No One Special” when realized just how bad my early writings were. This book was based on one year’s worth of my blog posts. I thought the concept was pretty good, and I have never heard of someone trying this before. I remember when I first started the editing process; I was shocked by just how bad my writing was. I was astonished anyone who read my early writings ever came back for more. It was in reading these writings which caused me to see the shortcomings of my ability. Even though I am no longer doing this book, I am happy because it opened my eyes causing me to work harder on what I put out there. I hope the stuff I am doing today is a far better product.

I was working on this doing some editing and adding new content to my older posts. I think I stopped editing around posts from April. I was already 78 pages into this project and realized this could turn out to be a three hundred page or more project. I am not known for writing the shortest posts, so I apologize if my stuff can sometimes be long winded. I had to take a step back and ask myself why I was doing this. What was my motive, and what was my ultimate goal.

I suppose my motive and goals was to get another one of my books out there on the market. I wanted to provide my regular readers with an opportunity to have all my posts at their fingertips (does this sound conceded?) I wanted to hold a year’s worth of my work in my own hands. I wanted to have a product for new readers who would like to read my stuff without having to do it on the computer. I looked at this and felt my goals and motives were not enough to waste my time finishing this project. I loved the idea, hate the time and effort needed only to appease myself.

More importantly than writing I think this quote can be applied in our personal lives to reveal some much needed insight and truth. Normally when I am in an argument with my wife, or angry about something I will let it stew inside of me consistently adding fuel to the fire. I will go analyze the issue over and over again only seeing things through my narrow minded selfish perspective. One night I was particularly bothered by a certain event which was just eating away at me. I didn’t feel like talking with anyone about it so I started having a conversation with myself.  In turning my irritation into vocalized words I discovered what I was upset about was really stupid and trivial, and yes dare I say this I may actually be wrong. In doing this I was able to clearly see what the problem was, how I was feeling about it, and how others were feeling. I discovered the problem was not other people as I previously thought but was indeed my stubbornness ego which was wrong. I was able to find fault and selfishness for why I was mad, and I gained a better understanding to why my wife was mad at me. In speaking it out loud I was forced to listen to myself and in listening to myself I found clarity. For the first time this situation finally made sense to me.    

I also applied this to my performance as a father. If I am in the midst of playing Madden, writing, or entranced by the television I will get annoyed when I am interrupted by the children. I was confronted with my behavior when I spoke this situation out load. To hear myself say I am angry because my children want my attention or they just needed help with something breaks my heart to actually see my behavior. This verbal self analysis brought light and understanding to my shortcomings. Like my writing I have truly been forced to listen.

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Comments
  1. mishibone says:

    I like your introspection. It’s one of the things creativity causes us to do. I have ELEVEN blogs that make up my website, so don’t feel like you’ve done too much. This from a person who never, ever expected to be writing very much at all on the internet, if anything. But things happened to me, and other things DIDN’T happen, and writing on the many blogs is true history, and creativity, and a mild distraction from pain.

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