Sherrie sees what I can't.
For years, The Rules author Sherrie Schneider has been saying, "Kim, Write that book!" So I started a blog to overcome my writer's block and share my diary as a dating coach. I hate the term "writer's block" because it feels like a self-created excuse. And I don't want to make excuses for anything--ever.
Is writer's block real? Is that my problem? If so, how do I overcome this?
The truth is, I have a tendency to mentally edit while I write, which slows me down quite a bit. It's gotten to the the point where I have hundreds of drafts that never get published because they are "unedited" and "incomplete."
As soon as I type, I'm already backspacing. Even my husband can hear me backspacing in the next room. My filters are so strong sometimes that it prevents me from writing fast, fluidly and powerfully... Except when I'm being light and breezy in emails with Ellen & Sherrie.
It seems like that's when my writing is the most interesting is when I'm being casual and conversational. Not when I'm trying to be a writer.
When I post an Instagram quote, I'll share a side story kind of like "Oh, by the way..." But in all honesty, Ellen & Sherrie seem to be much more interested in the side story than the main quote itself--which took me many hours to write!
OY. The irony.
For example, I recently posted a story about how Rules Girls are the norm, not rare. And it happened to coincide with my Grandma's birthday. In her honor, I wrote about everything her life, how she fled a war with 5 kids, no English, no degree, no job... Nothing. I wrote everything but the most important part: how she was a Rules Girl! I can't believe I totally left that out.
According to her best-friend, the woman I called my "Great Grandma" who took care of me said that she herself had over 50 suitors. I was like, "Really? Wow." Then she said, "But your Grandma had over 100." She said it rather nonchalantly as if her number of suitors wasn't nearly as impressive as my Grandma's.
I was only 5 years old and in kindergarten at the time, so I'm not even sure why she told me that. It's not like I was 5 going on 25, and getting a husband soon. I was chasing after the ice cream man! All I could think about was saving six dimes to buy myself a Blue Ghost ice cream pop with a bubble gum nose. What did I care about proposals? Does anyone else remember Blue Ghosts?
But now I'm glad she did because it's similar to The Rules story about Melanie's grandma, the woman who had more marriage proposals than shoes. Back then, it was normal to have 50 to 100 suitors lined up. This is no exaggeration. That's just how things were done pre-Tinder era. There was no other way.
Men would come from far away villages to find their future wives in neighboring villages, which was actually far! Men were real hunters back then. They had to travel distances to marry their wives because high value women are worth it. None of this "meet me halfway" business for a beer. No. Never!
(One time, I went there on a trip with my Mom. It was a 2-hour ride from the city out in the middle of Bumf&ck, Egypt. When we came back from my grandma's village, I tried to clean up by putting a wet napkin over my face. I pressed gently and it left a black imprint of my face. I showed my Mom, "Look! I'm like the Jesus and the Shroud of Turin!" My Mom was laughing out loud hysterically like a little girl... Rolling on the floor... She asked me if she could save the wet nap as a souvenir of our trip. I was not amused. I was exhausted, filthy and pissed because we were supposed to take a bus, not a 2-hour motorcycle ride to the back country where everyone has a pond!)
That's why men appreciated and valued them more. They had to suffer miles on foot to find women. In my grandma's generation, women were not easily accessible or available to men. But today, women are OVEREXPOSED. As a result, they get treated like every other woman rather than a "Creature Unlike Any Other."
Later on when I became an adult, I heard someone else (a non-family member in a group gathering) say my grandmother was the prettiest girl in her village. She married late for her age--21. Not for a lack of suitors but more like "tyranny of choice."
Maybe that's why she was so haughty and carried herself with a distinguished royal air?
Ellen & Sherrie have the story in pieces from my emails.
Sherrie: "There's a book in this and your grandma!"
Me: "What kind of book, a memoir?"
Sherrie: "A memoir and how to from your grandma to The Rules!"
She sent me the title of a controversial memoir of a mother that made The New York Times Bestseller list.
Sherrie sees the little side notes as the real story. Not the stuff you see on Instagram.
Maybe I'm too close to see it. Maybe because I'm too deep in it.
There's a saying, "Fish can't see water."
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