Tag Archives: reading

Not Writing Because I am a Writer: Self-Doubt as Self Story

Why, you may ask, have I not been writing posts for this blog as frequently as I once did?

When I started this blog in 2014, I wrote one post a week. Every Thursday; very disciplined.  Then once every two weeks. Now it has slipped further. My friend Caroline asked me why I am writing less often.

Because I am now a fully accredited writer, I told her. A writer who is enrolled in a Master’s degree program in Writing at a highly regarded university. And the more I write, the more I doubt myself. 

Which I think is something many women have long excelled at. Self-doubt.

I don’t think it I am alone in specializing in self-doubt.

I wrote once about visiting a law school professor during his (always “his” back then) office hours to question my grade on a final exam. I thought it was too high! Can you imagine, I suggested he’d made a mistake in giving me an “A” because I didn’t think I deserved it. The professor politely confirmed that his grade was correct and shooed me out of his office.

Some of us never learn. We think every good “grade” in whatever field we are in must be a mistake on the part of the grade-giver.

That close cousin of self-doubt, self-comparison, has also been visiting me lately. You may share the same unwelcome cousin, those thoughts that compel us to compare ourselves to others.

Though you haven’t asked, I will tell you that I have been getting (unexpectedly IMHO) excellent grades in the writing course I am taking this semester. In “Contemporary American Writers” we read both fiction and non-fiction written by a diverse group of American (duh) writers and then write Critical Response papers analyzing their work from the perspective of a writing craft technique such as character development, point of view or structure.

True Confession:  I had to google the term “Critical Response.”  It did not help when our young adult son told me that he learned how to write a Critical Response when he was in middle school. When I was in middle school, it was then called “junior high” which tells you (a) how long ago it was that I was in junior high and (b) that I never learned to write a Critical Response paper.

But I do now!  I received a very good grade on the first one I wrote. And an even better one on the second.

Does this mean I am a good writer? Or simply a person who is good at following the professors’s directions? Both? Neither? Or someone perennially plagued with self-doubt.

The doubt factor has even crept into my reading for pleasure. I am a rabid reader. The kind of person known to read the back of Kleenex boxes when nothing else is available and is desperate for the printed word.

In the greatest of ironies, now that I am learning to read like a writer, I am enjoying it less! I read a few paragraphs in a much-anticipated novel or a favorite mystery and then start to think:

  • wait, isn’t this too much back story?
  • shouldn’t there be a scene here instead of summary?
  • did the author just make a mistake in her point of view?

Sometimes I want to go back to my old self who was not consciously aware of the distinctions between “alliteration,” “anaphora” and “assonance.”

Perhaps I have also mislaid my writer’s “voice.”

At a meeting of my amazing DC women’s writers group earlier this week, my writer pals unanimously concluded that while my writing has improved (they credit the classes I’ve been taking),  I seem to have lost some of my writer’s voice.

I’m not as snarky, not as sarcastic, not as candid, not as clever. Not as much me. Perhaps because every time I sit down to write I am too damn careful to use every bit of writerly craft I’ve been learning correctly.

Too much focus on craft = loss of authentic voice?

The supportive women in my group reassured me that I will – someday – recover my original voice. That once I get beyond this “wow, look what I learned today” phase of my writing career (which is, by the way, annoying the heck out of my husband), that the craft part will come more naturally and the authentic me part of it will return.

Will I also outgrow the “self-doubt” part as well? Or will I always be that person double-checking the transcript to see if my grade is correct?

I vote for the latter. Self-doubt is not easily outgrown. Look at this way: like many women, I will always –  effortlessly – get an “A” in self-doubt.

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Blogging, Books, Communications, Education, Female Friends, Law School, Reading, Second Careers, Women, Writing

Boomer Learning From Millennials: Lessons From a Fiction Writing Class

Head Library - flat concept vector illustration

do know who Beyoncé is; I want to state that from the outset. I may not be familiar with all of her songs or videos – but yes, I know what she looks like and that she is a famous singer/songwriter.

What I did not know was that a recent politically themed skit I saw on TV ( a funny, IMO, take on Mr. Tangerine Man) on “Saturday Night Live” was meant to be a parody of her Lemonade video.

Missing out on current cultural references? Yup, it happens often as we get older. But so – thankfully – does an appreciation for the different perspectives that come from being able to study with people of different ages.

There are eleven students in the “Techniques of Writing Fiction” class I am taking this fall at JHU. Perhaps half are under the age 35. The very nice young man who sits to my left in class listened to me patiently the other night as I fumbled to describe the SNL skit. He turned to me and said, “Oh, you mean the skit that was the parody of the Lemonade video?”

I laughed, pretending that I had known all along about Beyoncé and the video reference. I’d like the younger students in my class to think I am culturally au courant but I’m sure they recognize that I am not.

But I do enjoy being around the 20 and 30-somethings because of the perspectives they have. Not only their outlooks on life, but how through the lens of their experiences and age (or lack thereof?), they offer up unexpected interpretations of the stories we read for our class homework.

Last week one of the assigned readings was the classic “But the One on the Right” by Dorothy Parker, a short story published in The New Yorker in 1929 (and no, I was not alive in 1929.)

It’s an interior monologue of a woman of a certain age who is purposefully seated by her hostess at a formal dinner party with the intent to entertain the known-to-be boring man to her left.  “We can stick him next to Mrs. Parker – she talks enough for two.”

The dull dinner companion likes to discuss each course of food as it is served. Yes, they both like soup. The fish course is fine too. He and Mrs. Parker disagree on the potatoes, but return again to a shared admiration of cucumbers. All the while Mrs. Parker is gulping down wine and wondering how more enjoyable the evening might be if she only she could talk instead with the seemingly more attractive man seated on her other side, who ignores her throughout the multi-course meal.

I won’t ruin the end of the story for you; it is well-worth reading.

I laughed aloud at the Dorothy Parker story, enchanted by her writing. The droll inner thoughts of a sophisticated older woman who implies she’d rather be happily cleaning her bureau drawers at home than be forced to be out in polite but terribly dull company. It rang true to me, having been at many parties stuck with an uninspiring conversational companion. Or two.

One of my younger classmates did not find the story the least bit humorous. To my surprise, she saw the narrator as a lonely and sad older woman.

Another homework assignment was to read a more contemporary, prize-winning writer, an Egyptian-born, Sudanese author named Leila Aboulela, who writes about identity, migration and Islamic spirituality. In her story titled “The Museum,” a young Muslim woman from a well-born but now struggling family in Khartoum comes to very cold Northern Scotland to study statistics in an unexpectedly rigorous graduate school program. Anxious about doing well in her studies, she falls under the unwilling spell of a smart but unpolished Scottish fellow grad student who is attracted by her exotic background.

Again, I won’t ruin the story for you; it also is beautifully written.

I was captivated by Ms. Aboulela’s main character, Shadia. Her straddling of two cultures reminded me of my own days in a small, 100 person graduate student program, half of us, like me, from the U.S. and half of us from other countries. I probably was not as culturally sensitive as I might have been to my own foreign student classmates back in the 1970’s.  Maybe filtered through those memories is why I found Shadia such a sympathetic character.

A younger student in our class totally disagreed with me. She thought Shadia came across as arrogant and selfish.

Is it odd that I find these classroom discussions so exhilarating?

We read the same words, the same stories, the same fiction, yet each of us interprets meaning so differently. In my suburban home-town book club, we also read and share thoughts about what we read, but we are a group of similar-aged women of similar backgrounds. Our discussions are, dare I say it, not quite as exhilarating.

Kudos really to the younger students in my fiction grad school class who are opening my eyes to what I am reading, who force me to pay attention, to acknowledge that what I perhaps think is the correct understanding of a story may not be the only way of understanding it. Diversity, differences, making me think about what I am reading – and what I am hearing from others. A good lesson to apply to the rest of life. Perspectives should always enlarge, not narrow, as we get older. I may even get to like Beyoncé yet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Aging, Baby Boomers, Book Club, Books, Communications, Education, Reading, Women, Writing

New Beginnings and Better Endings

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You don’t have to be Jewish to love the tradition of dipping apple slices into honey.  This Sunday night we celebrated the start of the Jewish New Year – a/k/a Rosh Hashanah (rosh = head; ha = the, shanah = year. thus endeth my Hebrew lesson.)

The custom of dipping apples into honey is to express our hopes for a healthy, sweet and fruitful new year. Since I’m way too old to be the fruitful in the biblical sense, I will settle for a sweet and healthy new year instead.

Unfortunately, the new year in my family has gotten off to a rocky start. My friend Liz reassures me that if your year starts off poorly, it can only get better. I am relying on her prognostication abilities.

Let me also take retract what I just said about not expecting this to be a fruitful year. Not in the sense of producing human offspring (now that would be a miracle) – but in the sense of producing another kind of product. You see, this fall I returned to school. Not just “taking a class” but I made the leap to  formally enroll – with the photo student I.D. to prove it – in a university graduate school program to “pursue” (such a lofty word) a M.A. in Writing.

I am thrilled to be back in school.

If only there had been a high-paying career called “student” where I could have earned a salary to go to class, do homework diligently and study hard for exams, I would have done that instead of becoming a lawyer. Studying is something I find fun. Learning is even better. And wow, am I learning.

The class I am taking is called “Techniques of Fiction”. What, I can hear you say, there are techniques involved in the writing of fiction? Yes there are. Moving right along in the syllabus from character, setting/place, plot and structure to scene v.s summary, point of view, voice, dialogue and description – and I am loving every classroom minute of it.

The great irony is that while I am taking a course in the writing of fiction, my real life seems to be blurring a bit into the territory of fiction. Or what I wish was fiction (e.g. events that really did not happen to me.)

My fabulous (she really is) professor told us that it is acceptable to steal from your real life to write fiction.

That seems like cheating to me. Although right now it seems appealing to base a short story or novel on deeply upsetting real life events where you get to change the way the characters behave, modify the plot and write a totally different ending. That would be a form of therapy, I guess.

But I don’t view writing fiction as therapy. I am taking this Fiction course in order to learn a craft, to become very good at it and to produce work that other people will want to read because it is well-written, not because it is an endless, Nancy-filled, woe-is-me-story.

We all have our problems, don’t we?

If you had looked at me last Saturday night when my husband and I attended the wedding of the daughter of a close friend, when we were dancing to every song the d.j. played, raising our hands in the air to the music and pretending we knew the words, you would likely have never guessed we were going through such rocky stuff in our non-dancing lives. The photos taken will no doubt prove I had a big smile on my face.

And I bet others on the wedding dance floor who were also smiling were doing so despite whatever personal difficulties they are enduring.

So here’s to a sweet, fruitful and healthy new year for all – whatever you celebrate – and also to the reading and writing of fiction.

Now back to my homework.

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Family, Female Friends, friendship, Holidays, Jewish, Mental Health, Midlife, Second Careers, Semi-Retired, Women, Writing

Guilty Pleasures of the Non-Edible Sort: Books, TV and Becoming a Writer

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I am NOT going to discuss the many guilty pleasures we enjoy in the food world (fyi, crispy tortilla chips and home-made guacamole tops my list. )

No, I want to talk about a bit about those guilty pleasures we have of the non-edible variety.

Guilty pleasures that we devour by reading or viewing. Those little pleasures that we try to keep secret from our friends (and spouses) for fear they will think less of us. How can we be perceived as the thoughtful, literate and intelligent beings we know we are if we occasionally indulge in reality TV ( GUILTY)?

My mystified husband when he comes upon me watching DVR-recorded reality TV asks:

Why do you like to watch those dumb house buying/selling shows so much?”

I hit the “pause” button and/or change the channel but I don’t answer him.

They are such different fare than my usual diet of news/talk shows or British detectives on PBS. But I find real-estate-related reality TV fascinating. And many people (excluding my husband) do too, I’m sure.

For who doesn’t like to peer into a wealthy person’s over-the-top master bedroom? Or laugh at the frequent complaints of a prospective buyer that an L.A. swimming pool is just too small? Or wonder why so many Americans never understand why all European apartments don’t come with granite counter-tops and giant refrigerators?

Why does a “guilty pleasure” make us feel so guilty anyway?

My in-the-know daughter reassures me that these days it is acceptable to have cultural tastes that are both “high” and “low.” So I am in the norm (normcore?) by liking to watch TV at both levels.

But this high/low concept may not apply equally well to my tastes in books.

I am an avid (rabid, really) but picky reader. I have no problem putting a book down very quickly if it is not well-written. Its’ characters must be well-developed, the sense of place strong and the story arc clearly organized to hold my attention.

I’m a fan of the classics, love Jane Austen and Edith Wharton. And I pounce on any new books by contemporary female authors such as Julia Alvarez, Jhumpa Lahiri and Ann Patchett, beautiful writers all.

But I do steer away from the impenetrable books that sometimes top best seller lists and garner much reviewer praise. Sometimes I think book reviewers assume that the more difficult the book, the better.

When I read a book that is both well-written and enjoyable, I wonder – Has that become a guilty pleasure too?

Perhaps I am a tad over-sensitive because I have been trying to fashion a second career as a writer. I take classes, read books on the craft of writing and write every day. I continue to write non-fiction essays and articles about young adult mental health and parenting.

But what’s new this fall are my experiments with fiction. What we called “creative writing” in the old days. Writing a series of short-stories. Creating an outline for a possible novel.

The fabulously supportive women in my writer’s group cheer me on. Yesterday they told me I have “found my voice.” Which is great…

BUT. There is always a but. They describe my fiction writing voice as accessible and friendly. But not literary like my favorite authors. My descriptions are not lush, my prose is not lofty. Sigh.

I expect that when (“when” and not “if”) I publish my first short story or book, a reviewer will place me in the genre of “relatable” fiction –  as in “chick lit” for older women who are no longer chicks and perhaps never were chicks.

Yes, if I am lucky, my writing may fall into the category of being someone else’s guilty pleasure. Just like guacamole and chips or (at least some) reality TV. Ms. Faulkner I shall not be – but likely not Ms. Fluff either.

So please – feel free to indulge in whatever your own reading or viewing pleasures may be, and let’s lose the guilt, shall we?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

While I ha developing a voice, relatable, not impenetrable. the more you don’t understand something doesn’t mean the better it is.

 

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Filed under Baby Boomers, Book Club, Books, Communications, Female Friends, Reading, Retirement, Second Careers, Semi-Retired, Women, Writing, Young Adult Mental Health

You wear my shoes, I’ll wear yours: Changing Perspectives, Parenting and Mental Health

Four pairs of various running shoes laid on a wooden floor background

What does it mean to “walk in another person’s shoes”?

One of my favorite children’s books was “The Really Real Family” by Helen Grigsby Doss.

Set in Hawaii, it’s the story of two young girls, orphans of multi-cultural background, living with a foster-mother while they waited to be adopted by a “really real family.”

After the girls quarreled, their foster mom suggested they could best understand the other girl’s true feelings if they actually walked in each other’s shoes. So they switched shoes, walked in them for a while, and came to see the other child’s point of view. And thus the quarrel was patched up.

Not sure why this book has resonated with me for so long  – was it because as a kid growing up in Connecticut, Hawaii seemed like a far-off foreign land where people ate odd things like “poi?” Or because I was intrigued by kids who lacked a family?  Or fascinated by the idea of actually switching shoes to find out how another person really thinks?

Last week I had a chance to understand what it means to see things from inside another person’s mind, if not their shoes.

On Thursday and Friday I was invited to participate as one of 14  mental health “experts” in a NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) advisory group on “Engagement.” Our group was composed of doctors, psychologists, social workers, advocates, family members – with diverse mental health perspectives from around the U.S.

And what, you may ask, is the concept of “Engagement” and why does it matter? Let me explain in non-jargonese.

One of the hats I wear (Except I don’t wear actual hats. Ever. I look terrible in hats.) but figuratively one of the hats I wear is as an advisor/advocate/writer on young adult and college-related mental health.

In mental health lingo, “Engagement” traditionally has meant methods of reaching out to people who have mental illness, at whatever stage of their experience, so they will enter into treatment and hopefully, comply with it.

Sounds pretty straightforward, doesn’t it? And in many small discussion forums, the participants accept, without question, the written agenda set by the sponsoring organization.

But (thankfully) not this group!

Right from the start, even as our group’s facilitator was hand-writing the standard definition of “Engagement” up on the flip chart in the front of the conference room – hands shot up in the air to challenge it.

The conventional definition doesn’t work, most participants contended. We need to start thinking of “Engagement” not just as a one-way-street (doctor engages patient), but as an active, two-way process where the person receiving the treatment has an opportunity to express his goals, then a plan for reaching those goals is mutually designed and both the provider and the patient work together to get there.

I started to listen more closely – fascinated as the older model of “Engagement” was tossed aside and a new one evolved from lived experience.

As the Mom of a teen and then young adult with mental health challenges, I had always subscribed, without giving it much thought, frankly, to the conventional  “Engagement” model of health care  – the provider as the knowledgeable giver of a remedy and the person with the illness as the quietly docile recipient.

Does this sound familiar to you?  Person develops symptoms, sees a doctor and the doctor says ” You are ill, you are broken. I can fix you! Here take this pill and come back in one week.”

As a parent my perspective was always a narrow one:   “Did you take your medicine? Did you go to therapy? Are you doing what the doctor says you should do?”

I rarely, if ever, thought about how mental health care must feel from the perspective of my child.

How my child must have felt about the experience of being on the receiving end of a scary sounding diagnosis, of being thought of as a broken object to be fixed  – so focused was I on wanting my child to get better – and as soon as possible, please.

What I should have done, I’ve realized, is somewhere along the way –  figuratively or literally – was to switch shoes (sneakers in this case) with my child so I could walk in another person’s shoes to see how it felt to be him.

During last week’s meeting two participants in our group made this concept come vividly alive for me.

Two amazing young adult women, both in the early years of their professional careers, both living with mental illness. They spoke eloquently about what it was like to leave college, how it felt to be hospitalized, to feel socially rejected by some peers, to experience discrimination in educational and professional settings and to deal with a mental health system that was all about “fixing them” – and not about understanding them.

You will no doubt be glad to know that during last week’s meeting I did not actually take off my own shoes and try to exchange them with any other participant.

But just listening to the other participants gave me an “ahah” moment. For real understanding to happen I needed to see the situation from the other person’s perspective. The other person who has actually lived the experience, beyond having my opinions shaped from where I sit as the knowledgeable-yet-worried parent figure.

Likely this concept translates to the parenting of children with all sorts of challenges, big and small. And to other kinds of broken systems, not just the mental health care system.

For we won’t know what needs be changed – and how to make those changes – until we really listen to the people on the receiving end – or we get a chance to walk in their shoes, literally or figuratively.

 

 

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Filed under Adult Kids, Books, College, Communications, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Parenting, Raising Kids, Relationships, Women, Young Adult Mental Health

More Fun than Dental Surgery? – Book Clubs I have Known

 

bookshelf

 

Quick Question:

Would you prefer to have a Root Canal or belong to a Book Club?

My “fellow” blogger, Suzanne Stavert, wrote a lovely post recently about her book club.

She included jealousy-inducing photos of a friendly-looking group of women, drinks in hand, sitting on the deck of a boat discussing their chosen book. (photos here: http://www.adventuresofemptynesters.com/summer-fun-dana-point)

But Suzanne purposefully chose not to use the words “book club” in the post’s title.

So as not to scare off any would-be readers.

As she put it – “Believe it or not, there are people who would rather get a root canal than be a member of a book club.”

I don’t get this. Maybe because as a child I was a happy bookworm. Reading at all meals (when permitted), going to a chair in the corner to read while my parents visited friends, reading by flashlight while I was supposed to be sleeping. Reading whatever I could get my hands on. Reading the back of a kleenex box in desperation on a family trip one night when I had finished a book and did not have another to start. My worst nightmare.

Actually my worst nightmare is dental surgery.

I once bit my dentist’s hand.

But I digress.

I am a serial creator of book clubs.

And unafraid (until I see what feedback I receive, that is) to use the words “book club” in the title of this post.

Book clubs are more fun than dental surgery. At least the ones I have known. All four of them.

Book Club #1 started when my friend Liz and I were in our 30’s. All couples of same age kids.  My husband reluctantly joined in. He also loves to read but doesn’t like being told what to read.  While driving to book club, I was to provide him with a synopsis of the first and last chapters of the book.

After a glass or two of wine, he was then able to discuss, with a great deal of authority, books he had never read.

Impressive to watch. But his behavior inspired the other husbands to do the same non-reading. Book Club #1 disbanded.

Book Club #2 was a group I created in my 40’s. I asked seven other moms who all had 9th grade daughters in the same school as mine to join. After a few meetings it was obvious that some of us (look in the mirror here) were more serious readers than others.  While I like to chat as much as anyone (just ask my husband), a year of meetings that consisted of 15 minutes of book talk and 1 and 3/4 hours of fun talk convinced us to change our status from book club to social hour.

So, back to my devoted reader friend Liz, we decided to launch Book Club #3. Because women tend to forget painful things that produce pleasure (childbirth, for example), once again a couples book club was born.  And once again it was a mistake. The men were more interested in things other than reading.  One night we spent an entire meeting discussing possible names – not of books to read, but for the book club.

What kind of book club has its own name?

Our husbands told us we needed a clever name so that our popular local independent book store could reserve a book club shelf just for us.  Shortly after the male members of Book Club #3 decided upon the name “The Scorpions”, a name that none of the female members voted for, Book Club #3 fell apart.

My devoted reader friend, Liz and I were determined to get it right with Book Club #4.

Women only! And only women who truly liked to read. And who would actually read the chosen book. And would talk about it without getting easily sidetracked into discussions (at least during hour one) about our health, our jobs or our adult kids.

Putting together Book Club #4 of eight women in our late 50’s was the easy part. Much harder has been deciding on what kinds of books to read.

Book Club #4 is a group of women that defines (in a good way) the meaning of the word “bossy”.

Each of us has our own strong preferences.

  • Pam likes serious stories filled with metaphors and philosophy.
  • I love a good mystery.
  • Liz favors thoughtful female fiction.
  • Karen wants to read the classics she avoided in college.
  • Deborah insists that all of the books we read should fall under the category of “Great Literature.”

Who are we to say no to “Great Literature”?

Although I soon learned that “Great Literature” mostly contains books about women who suffer.

So Book Club #4 specializes in reading books about Women who Suffer.

Perhaps this is why some people, as my fellow blogger, Suzanne said, would rather have a root canal than belong to a book club?

I don’t know, for us, Book Club #4, six years on, works.

We read a book about women who suffer, get together in someone’s living room in or near Washington, DC,  have a glass – or two – of wine,  talk about why and how the women suffered and then go home to our lives feeling good that we don’t suffer quite as much as our literary heroines.

Long live Book Club #4 – far better than root canal any day.

(if your preference is for dental surgery,  I’d love to know why.)

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Filed under Books, Midlife, Women

Why can’t I read a book on a Wednesday?

Wednesday afternoon. It’s raining. Dogs are napping at my side. Must-do list is nearly must-done. Perfect time to pick up the excellent British detective novel I am reading.

But I can’t.

I cannot read on Wednesdays.

Or I mean, I can read; I know how to read, I love to read, I have always been a voracious reader.

Just not on weekdays.

Reading is for nights just before bed or during vacations.

That was the rule I lived by during my worker-bee years.

Reading just for pleasure was always saved for bedtime. A few pages, a chapter, before my husband would crab at me – “lights off!”.

(yes, the kindle paperlight has improved my marriage.)

The best time to read was always on vacation.

I would save up books for weeks in advance.

Just looking at the growing pile would increase my anticipation of the week off where I would get to read every day during daylight hours! Savoring at least 2, maybe, 3 or 4 books a week.

Did I mention I am also a fast reader?

With tastes ranging from detective novels to political history to spy fiction to women’s literature.

Nothing better than the prospect of a new book by a favorite author!

Yet, here I am – “working from home” – finding my way into 2nd stage life after years of lawyering – and have the time to read on a Wednesday afternoon – but I can’t.

It is not as if I come from a strong puritan background. All work and no pleasure, no, that wasn’t me, isn’t me.

Although I grew up in Connecticut, let’s just say my family was more Ellis Island than Plymouth Rock.

Yet the pleasure of reading was always something I saved up for after all the work was done.

The daytime work at the office, the evening work of raising a family and making sure food was on the table, the nighttime of making to-do lists for the next day.

And so it went for years.

Now my office is at home, the kids are now adults, my husband has learned to feed himself and my chores are no longer so numerous.

Since I’ve left lawyering, I have started a business, joined a board, signed up to volunteer, taken classes and thought a lot about exercising more often.

So here it is on Wednesday afternoon. Raining, dogs napping. Email up to date. Twittered, facebooked, blogged.

And yet, and yet, why I can’t dip back into that excellent British detective novel I started last night?

Because it is 100% enjoyment.

Weekdays are for work, my head still says.

No, don’t be ridiculous, you’ve earned it, my heart says, grab that book!

The battle has begun.

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