Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Won't Get Schooled Again... Jenny O'Connell

Oh, to be schooled. Which is basically, for me, the realization that something I thought I knew for sure I actually didn't know at all. Like when I send a few chapters to my best friend for her to read. She's a great reader and I totally trust her. I usually don't send her anything until I'm pretty sure it's about 90% where I want it to be. So when she sends me back a lengthy email telling me why so many things aren't working for her, I feel... well, schooled is the nice way to put it. But the correct word is more like crappy. And reaction usually goes like this:

  • Oh! Feedback! Yea!
  • Oh. Feedback. Really?
  • Ugh.
  • Oh, she has it all wrong!
  • Doesn't she get it? 
  • I just don't think she gets it.
  • Deep breaths.
  • Maybe she makes some good points. 
  • Okay, I see how I could change that.
  • Yea, that might make it better. 
  • That gives me an even better idea!
  • A few ideas, actually.
  • Time to write before I lose all these great ideas. 
  • Lots of work to do.
  • Oh, feedback, yea!
The point is. being schooled sucks. Because basically it's a dose of reality that isn't pleasant. And if you take your schooling to heart (rather than ignoring it) then your next move will require work. And, let's be honest, work can suck. It can be hard. And take time. But at it's heart, to be "schooled" is to realize that you're still a student - of life, of writing, of whatever it is you can still improve. It's not easy but it's for your own good. No matter how old you are, how experienced you are or your position in life, you always have the opportunity to learn. Schooled is just easier on the tongue than "student-ed" which is really what it is - realizing that it's nice to be the teacher, but we learn more from being the student. 

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