Thursday, February 16, 2012

Again and Again

Ever do something, walk away and realize you forgot to say something important? And that it was probably obvious at the time but you were focused on something else and missed it?

Yeah, that happened to me this week. I taught a class for our local library on the fundamentals of good fiction. I tore through a huge list of topics - characterization, pace, show vs. tell, dialogue, etc. And apparently developed a brand new favorite phrase - 9 times out of ten. I have no idea why I felt the need to say it repeatedly. It isn't a phrase that comes up often in my normal life. Honestly, it wasn't even that important in the topic I was covering.

And, yet, I heard myself say it over and over again. To the point that I was aware of it and by the end was cringing internally every time I said it. But I couldn't seem to stop myself before the words were out of my mouth.

So what does this have to do with realizing I missed a great opportunity? It wasn't until later that night when I realized I could have used the situation in the class. At one point I even talked about ways to tighten your writing - like looking for repeated information, words and phrases. Duh! Like the one I kept repeating endlessly.

I'd really like to go back and edit my class. Unfortunately, without a time machine I don't think that's going to happen. Ever wish you could go back in time and change something you did or said?



Playground Monitor said...

I'm sure I have but I can't remember. I've probably blocked out the experience.

I'm sure you did a great job, repeated phrase and all.

robertsonreads said...

Great job! Trust me if you didn't say "like" you did good. I get so very tired of young people using that word. I am forevering fussing at my nieces about it. And yes, I have done that before and wish to hit byself on the head for doing so.

Angel said...

I find myself doing the same thing! Since I started work, I find myself saying "Bless her heart" more and more often. I'm not sure why. :)