I also used this opportunity for a 30-5 challenge. 30 minutes to write and 5 minutes to edit.
Karen sat down at the round metal table and watched the people coming through the small café. She didn’t know who they were or where they were coming from. She couldn’t tell you their names but she could still tell you their purpose in life.
Ever since she was a small child she was able to tell at a glance whether someone was going to heaven or hell. Her grandmother said it was the second sight but Karen knew there was more to it.
That’s why she had come here, to this café. She was meeting with a known psychic to find out what she was doing.
Karen looked at everyone in the café and wondered if the psychic was there yet. She had tried to get a picture of the man but was told it would ruin the experiment.
She rolled her eyes at the memory of their conversation. The psychic, who was apparently well-known in the supernatural community but not the mundane community, kept pausing when he was speaking. If she didn’t know any better, Karen would have sworn that it was all a joke.
But she was the one who had contacted him. Rayne, the psychic of psychics. If you were trying to figure out your power than Rayne was the man for the job.
Karen looked around and watched as a few people entered through the open doorway.
Suddenly, Karen’s laughter filled the air.
Rayne, the best man to find out your psychic power, was actually a woman. A very pregnant woman.
Karen read the words above Rayne’s head again. Instead of the usual “Heaven”, “Hell”, or “Undecided”, Rayne’s tagline read “If a man can’t do it, a woman can.”
This is a challenge I created to help me get past my perfectionism. Anyone is welcome to join in the challenge whether you join for one post, twenty posts or every post on your blog.
30-5 Post is a timed challenge designed to get perfectionists to stop over analyzing their posts. 30 minutes are to be spent on writing the post but no more than 5 minutes is to be spent on editing. Once the 5 minute time limit is up, the post must go online.
There will be mistakes. This challenge will be full of typos and grammatical errors slipping past the inner editor during those five minutes. I designed this challenge specifically for that fact.
However, in order for me to actually complete the challenge, I needed to have some editing, no matter how minor that may be. This is where the 5 minutes comes in.
Five minutes is enough time to run spell check and change some of the errors. It is not enough time to completely rewrite the post though.
And I realize that there will be posts that, on a second or third read through just need to be edited. So this challenge has a loop-hole. After 48 hours online (exactly 2 days), the post is allowed to be edited, revised, or deleted to your heart’s content.
However, the point of the challenge is to post regardless of what your inner editor may say. And, to be honest, my inner editor is not liking this challenge. This is my first post in this challenge and I already want to delete it.
So, for everyone who chooses to take part in this challenge (including me), good luck and may your inner editor spare your soul.
If I could, I would repay you for everything you have given me. But you have given me so much that I cannot even begin to thank you enough. I know we have this deal where I’ll eventually take care of you when you decide to retire, but that could be ages from now and I’m rather impatient. So, I guess I’ll have to start with this letter. Perhaps I can express in words at least some of the thanks I have.
I suppose I should start with the most important thing. You see, if not for you, I would not be here. You gave me the gift of life. You went through 10 months of pregnancy until I was ready to come into the world. And let’s not forget the pain you went through in labour. I honestly don’t know how you did it. Because I know me and I know I wouldn’t have made it easy on you.
Just for that, I cannot thank you enough. I mean, how can you thank someone who has allowed you to live? What can I do to repay you for that? You have given me a life that I could do anything with. You gave me infinite possibilities by bringing me into this world.
But more than life, you taught me how to live. Correction, you showed me how to live. You lived your life the way you wanted me to live mine. How many parents do I know that tell their kids not to swear when the air is blue from what they say? Or parents who tell their kids not to fight but scream at each other over the smallest thing? You didn’t do that. I always knew that you would do what you expected me to do.
And it worked. Everyone who knows you tells me how much I remind them of you. We have the same values and vivacity. You showed me how to live and you taught me to be strong.
This past year has put me through so many trials. There have been many days where I wanted to give up. Days where I wanted to wave the white flag and surrender to the pain. But, despite it all, I didn’t break because you taught me the strength of bending. If things don’t go my way, I can adapt because you showed me how.
But, of all the things you have taught me, the most important was to tell my stories. I cannot remember a time where I didn’t have stories running through my head. I also cannot remember a time when you weren’t encouraging me to share them. You gave me paper and crayons to scribble out stories that no one could read but me.
You even edited my stories. I know how horrible editing can be and yet you are still willing to slug through every word set before you. I hardly even have to ask because you automatically make notes in the margins of my stories. I cannot tell you how happy I am that my mother doesn’t believe that I write perfect prose in my sleep. Because of this, I am a better writer and I know how to use criticism to my advantage.
And yet, as I write this letter, I know that you won’t read it. Not because you won’t want to read it but because you don’t read my blog. Perhaps you would read my blog if you knew how to use the internet as more than a place to check email and Facebook. Maybe if I sent you the link in an email, you would read this letter and browse the rest of the site.
But I won’t because you already know everything that’s in this letter. I let you know how much I love you before I hang up the phone when we talk. I tell you how much I appreciate the help you so willingly give. I readily ask your advice on everything because I trust you to tell me the truth. And I hug you every chance I get.
Maybe someday you’ll come across my blog and read this letter that I never sent. Maybe, on that day, you’ll have given up trying to throw me in snow banks. Or maybe, I’ll actually send this letter to you. But I wouldn’t hold my breath on that last one if I were you.
Until I talk to you again (later tonight maybe?), I hope you have a wonderful Mothers’ Day. You most definitely deserve it.
Lately I’ve found that I’ve had to remind myself that, no matter how hard I try, I am not perfect. I am human. I make mistakes. Sometimes, I put things off or do them less than perfect. But what I have to keep reminding myself is that imperfection is alright. It is ok to make mistakes and even to put things off. I don’t need to make excuses when what I have put off is something I do for myself.
You see, I’ve found myself procrastinating. I’ve put off writing blog posts because of things that have come up in my life. After putting off so many posts, I started to believe that I should just give up on my writing because it’s already too late and what I was writing was pretty bad. In fact, I have several half-written blog entries which will probably never see the world outside of my computer.
But the other day as I was trying to find my way through Edmonton and getting completely lost, I realized that it didn’t matter. My writings are done for me. If other people like them, that is great but that is not why I write.
I need to erase my current attitude toward myself and restart with a new, better attitude. Preferably one which allows me to grow into the person who I wish to become.
So, for all you people who actually read this post, I am not getting rid of this blog and I’m not going to give reasons or excuses when I can’t update. What I am going to do, is update when I can regardless of whether I think it is a well written post. Because the only way I can grow in my writing is to actually write, regardless of if I write well.
You might not write well every day, but you can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page. – Jodi Picoult
*This post was written in response to the Daily Post’s writing challenge entitled “Starting Over”*
*Warning: This post may be controversial or triggering in manner. It is not meant to offend and if it does, I apologize. However, if you feel the need to post comments meant to inflame or offend, please know they will not be tolerated and will be promptly deleted.**
My mom has been drinking tea the same way ever since I can remember, orange pekoe with a splash of milk and a teaspoon of sugar. I would always try to steal a sip from her teacup when I was a child. Of course, I never succeeded in drinking my mom’s tea. She always caught me with my hand on her teacup before I got that anticipated taste of tea. Sometimes, if I was lucky, Mom would allow me to have a sip or two; however, she would usually swat my hand away and tell me that tea would stunt my growth.
Now that I’m older, I can make my own cup of tea; however, nothing will replace tea time with my mom. It’s more than just a drink of tea, it’s the place where we would talk about everything that was going on in our lives. We would talk out our frustrations with the world while the tea warmed our hands. We would dream of the impossibilities we would accomplish while pouring our second, or third, cup. With the tea warming our bodies and the company warming our hearts, the bottom of the tea pot always seemed to hold more promise than just the last drop of tea.
It was through Mom’s belief in me and countless cups of tea that I finally gathered up enough courage to post my imperfect writings. And I have a feeling I will be relying on many more cups of tea with my mom before I finally have enough courage to get my writings published.