Saturday, March 1, 2008

My barriers and American Idol

I finally figured it out. Yay! Heather gave us this theme assignment – “What barriers eclipse your writing?” - and boy was I struggling with the answer. I mean, after all, if I knew that, I wouldn’t have them, right?

Well, I was watching American Idol this week, and a few of the girls had chosen songs based on what they thought judges or fans might say... in other words, (according to Ryan and the judges) they were overthinking their selections.

I could immediately relate to that. Ramiele Malubay bypassed slower songs she liked because she thought people would start calling her Lullaby Malubay (a sophomoric taunt anyway). Paula suggested she forget about all of that and just go for the ones that she feels are right for her, that showcase her talent, etc. etc. etc. My interpretation: go with your gut. Or something. Do what tastes right. Whatever. Be you.

She wasn't the only one with that issue. Other women were told the same thing. The country girl who likes fishing and horseback riding vowed that after tonight, she would show off her country skills.

The nurse who is a bookworm did a song that didn't fit with her bluesy style. Randy told her to stick with those, because they work for her. I have to agree.

It's so easy when you're playing armchair quarterback on American Idol to see this. It's quite another matter when you're the writer, sitting in front of your article, wondering how to do this thing. Should I use this word, or would that make me sound stupid? Does this lead have enough zing? What about the order of the article, and are the transitions brilliant enough?

So that’s one of the barriers I think that eclipses my writing. Some people call it an internal editor. The solution is supposed to be to write without regard to all of that, because you can go back and edit later.

I’ll let you know when I figure out how to do that. ;-)


Serenity Now! said...

Good job Carolyn! It's hard to see our barriers... and sometimes so much easier to see the barriers that others have!

But once we identify our own barriers, we have a fighting chance of climbing over them ... getting around them... running through them!

listplanit said...

I'll tell you that American Idol IS a barrier to my writing! I have too much to do to be sitting on the couch watching brainless fluff. . .but I find I can't resist!