I'm going to be stuck on Fierce on the Page for quite a while as I it read again, writing down all the points I underlined, making notes to myself, thinking about what she says. I highlighted a few things from chapter 28 Fail Harder:
In japan, wabi-sabi is an aesthetic rooted in the art of imperfection, celebration of the flaw that makes a piece of art unique. When you embrace imperfection in your writing, you welcome the human condition as your source of your writing. This helps you cultivate the compassion and acceptance that you and your writing deserve.
When you set your sights on perfection, it's easy to forget that mistakes yield some of the richest and most surprising material --insights, wisdom, and writing that is not accessible through so-called success. James Joyce proclaimed mistakes to be the portal to discovery.
It is also important to keep in mind that what you consider 'failure' can shape shift before your eyes as your contexts and interpretations change.
This is how life goes. We expend tremendous resources in what proves to be the 'wrong direction' and yet there are equally tremendous-- and often unexpected -- riches to be sourced from every 'mistake'.
When you don't get what you wanted or when someone hurts you or when you disappoint yourself to the brink of devastation, this is not the end of the story. Sooner or later, the pain you feel becomes a kind of transportation and you arrive somewhere else that never could have been accessible without that vehicle. Often,you end up somewhere even better than where you originally set your heart on going.
Wow! I just officially resigned my volunteer position at Writer's Village University where I had been facilitating and modding the non fiction courses for the past two or three years. I originally joined the community to take a few writing classes, got involved when they started a private MFA certificate program. After a while, I took on facilitating the non fiction courses and a few literature courses as well as taking the classes myself. I never earned the certificate, being a few courses short. After a while, I ran out of courses that were beneficial to me and recently decided it was time to move on. Was any of it a mistake? Did I waste my time?
Nope, not at all. I recall researching MFA programs a few years back and being intimidated by the offerings. I couldn't fathom doing nonfiction or poetry. I'm was a fiction girl, all the way. The past few years have taught me quite a bit and now I embrace non fiction essay and memoir writing. I've learned how to put an interesting class together for literature. I've learned how to provide constructive feedback as well as how to handle a variety of personalities. Thanks to WVU, I know I'm not limited in my choices and can do anything I put my mind too.
Looking back over all the jobs I had in the past, prior to getting married, every one,no matter how short or how long I lasted, was a step up and taught me something different giving me the skills to run a business. Here we are 20 years later still going strong and ready to move into a building we now can call our own.
Fail harder, embrace your imperfections, learn how to apply that to my writing,don't be afraid to make mistakes, because I just might be surprised and shoot for the moon.
Life is my classroom.