Friday, December 10, 2010

No one noticed my makeover

This has been a nightmare of a week at work. Seriously. I won't go into details since they're boring to everyone but me and have nothing to do with writing or reading. I'll just say that the first three days of this week were an unremitting series of small humiliations and defeats. Monday night I was so grim when I got home that Mom asked if I'd received a rejection. She knows me well.

I was off yesterday, thank goodness. What I mostly wanted to do was curl up and lick my wounds. Instead I decided that dammit I will not take this shit lying down. I need to stop apologizing to the universe for being alive. That means not just sticking up for myself at work when people try to walk all over me, but treating myself properly the rest of the time too.

Now as a writer, I fight hard against that inevitable feeling of "I'm awesome" since it comes with a set of blinkers that make it even harder to evaluate my work. But there is absolutely no need for me to be embarrassed of my accomplishments.

Here's the progression, and I bet I'm not alone in this kind of thinking: When I sell a story, I don't congratulate myself, I point out--to myself and others--that it's just a small magazine, not a pro sale. If I sell to a pro market, I'm quick to acknowledge that it's probably just a fluke, that most of my sales are just to small markets. When I sell a book, I say it's just a small press and the book won't actually be in stores. And one day when I do have a book accepted by a large commercial publisher, I can hear myself saying, "Well, it's just a fantasy/romance/mystery story," as if the only real books are whatever genre I haven't had published.

I'm going to stop this self-denigration now. I know I have a lot of hill left to climb in my writing career, but I'm proud of everything I've had published. I'm thrilled silly that The Weredeer has found a good home, and I believe in all the stories and books I still have in the works.

So to commemorate my new badass self, I went and got a drastic haircut yesterday: from long, floppy hair to short and bouncy(ish), and I threw away the ugly slacks I keep wearing to work even though they make me feel like a defeated old lady. Today I walked into work with an attitude of "I'm here to chew bubblegum and proctor tests, and I'm all out of bubblegum." I all but whistled the Dirty Harry theme.

And no one even noticed I'd had my hair cut. Dammit.

14 comments:

Natalie L. Sin said...

I'm sure they noticed. But they fear you now : )

K.C. Shaw said...

They'd better!

Aaron Polson said...

You don't want to mess with anyone out of bubble gum.

Remember "Sand-Skin Man"? Still one of my favorite stories. No fluke there...

Chadwicked said...

"I'm here to chew bubblegum and proctor tests, and I'm all out of bubblegum."

Haha . . . some people, they live in a completely oblivious state of mind.

K.C. Shaw said...

Aaron--Thanks. It was probably just a fluke. *smacks self*

Chadwicked--I've decided all my coworkers have a small blind spot that happens to be wherever I'm standing. That would explain a lot.

Diana said...

If you were whistling the theme to Dirty Harry, I would be running for cover. :)

Seriously, you're a brilliant writer. You deserve all the success that you get. :)

K.C. Shaw said...

Thanks. I promise I won't whistle the Dirty Harry theme around you. :)

Cate Gardner said...

Ha! I hear you.

I love this Eleanor Roosevelt quote that someone posted on a blog or forum earlier this year... "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." And by jove, it works.

I'm a total apologiser for existing, but that above line knocks it straight out of me.

K.C. Shaw said...

Oh, I love that quote! I'm going to remember that for sure.

BT said...

Pics of new look required...

K.C. Shaw said...

Conveniently, my mother's camera has died and her replacement camera is at my aunt's house. Whew! I dodged that bullet.

Actually, my hair looks pretty much the way it always does, just shorter.

Jeremy D Brooks said...

Just remember: chances are, none (or infinitesimally few) of your co-workers are paid, published authors. Hah.

K.C. Shaw said...

I think I can safely say you're 100% right. So phooey on them.

Free Range Anglican said...

Oh gosh, I bet you look cute with short hair!