Tuesday, January 23, 2007

My parking's not the only thing that needs validation

The Playfriends believe in goal setting—as you probably know by now. But I’m also a big believer in rewards—if I do X; I get Y. (Often those rewards are food related, which probably explains why I’ve gained fifteen pounds.)

Validation is also important. Like rewards, validation makes you feel like you’ve accomplished something.

But validation is often hard to find in this biz (unless you have the Playfriends on speed dial), so I keep two validation files on my computer. The first is called “Yay, Me!” and it contains all my contest finals, published articles, and things of that nature all nicely set out in an Excel spreadsheet so I can see my accomplishments at a glance. I also have my “Rah-Rah” file, which contains positive strokes for my ego when I’m feeling down. In it, there’s the copy of the email from an editor telling me she loves my voice and several emails from a published friend who read one of my books and said lots of nice things about it. I even have an audio file in my Rah-Rah folder. An editor left a message on my machine for me once to reject one of my books—but she had several nice things to say about it anyway. I, validation whore that I am, recorded the message onto my digital recorder so I could save it forever on my hard drive. When I’m having an “I Suck” day, I can open my Rah-Rah file and find little ego strokes.

Odd? Probably. But it sure beats ice cream—at least as far as my thighs go…

“I Suck” days exist outside the writer’s life as well. I usually call them “Slug” days—the ones where you feel fat and your skin’s breaking out and your hair won’t do right and everything everyone says either hurts your feelings or pisses you off and all you want to do is stay in the bed and be a big old slug. Because that’s what you feel like. Ice cream, movies, and a day in bed wallowing are the usual fixes.

I have validation files on my computer and ice cream in the freezer. How do you pump yourself back up when you’re having an “I Suck” or a “Slug” day?


Today, thankfully, is not an “I Suck” or a “Slug” day at PC’s house. I’m feeling pretty good about myself. That could, of course, change at any minute…


Smarty Pants said...

So far, ice cream is about it. I need to start hanging good bits of this and that on the blessing ring PM got me for Christmas, but I'm not sure where to start.

I'm seriously considering some "I don't suck" buttons. Either that or 15 sticky notes all over my office that say that.

I'm not a full on slug, but I've been sluggish all month.


Kathy said...

Chocolate Chip Cookies! Can I get an AMEN?

Has anyone seen the movie Slither? At least, I think that's what it was called. It's a horror, comedy. A woman is impregnated with millions of worm thingies. She's this great big round ball of flesh and says she doesn't feel so good when the sheriff finds her just before she explodes, releasing the worms who then proceed to infest all living things. That's how I feel on a slug day. Does that give you a good picture? LOL.

A good movie, a good book, soothing music... these are things that always work to combat the savage beastie or alien invaders threatening to tear me to shreds. Slug days... not a good thing.


Smarty Pants said...


Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Hi, Playfriends! I woke up thinking of youz this morning. Does that sound creepy? Anywayz, I thought I'd come say hi.

I totally have days when I tire of talking about how great everyone else is. But I never thought of keeping a "yay me" file. I do have a "Reviews of the Reviews" file, in which I keep nice thank you notes from authors I've featured. Maybe I should dig in there on the days I'm feeling down, trying to write through hormones and kid aggravations.

I also treat myself with time reading non-work books.

Hope everybody's doing great, and your writing is rockin!

Playground Monitor said...

I'm trying not to soothe myself with food. Or if I do it's something like celery with Laughing Cow cheese or carrot sticks.

I usually read. Not only soothes away the slug feelings, but is something constructive when the muse won't cooperate. I've challenged myself this year to explore different genres. So far I've read a time travel and an African American romance. Now I'm reading my first Regency romance. Not sure how soothing it is since I feel like I'm reading a foreign language *g* but I'm only about 30 pages in so I'm sure I'll get used to the different style. Everyone's RAVED about this book so I'm sure it's going to be good once I really get into it.

I can see my blessing ring from my desk -- it's on the doorknob. I have notes from writing and non-writing friends. I should read them instead of grabbing that celery.


Anonymous said...

Oh wow, great idea about the files! I don't have anything like that. Hmm, what do I do on down days? I think I wallow and do something completely unrelated to writing. And then I tell myself that since there are about a bazillion books in the bookstore, there's always room for one more. :) Meaning I need to get off my butt and keep writing or I won't be in there.

My biggest challenge lately is how to keep moving forward when I have a husband who's home with me 24/7, parents who don't understand why I feel the need to lock myself in a room with a computer all day, and a huge feeling of being stuck with my wheels spinning while we wait for the DH to get working again.

OTOH, coming to the HOD meeting and meeting all of you was definitely a step in the right direction. :)

Kathy said...

SP, PC mentioned slugs first. LOL.


Problem Child said...

Hey Michele!! Glad you dropped by.

Well, I've gotten precious little done today. Sigh. But it wasn't due to attitude.

SP--you think we can get a volume discount on those buttons?

Smarty Pants said...

You should have DG come up with a design that we can sell at the WP store. It'd be a bestseller, methinks...