Friday, January 23, 2009

Acquiring Writing Material the Hard Way

Yesterday I came up with material for my next book. Drats!

I will most likely break ground on mi libro numero dos in the next few months. I have already received downloads on the title, high-level content, and structure. I have also been given assurances from Spirit that I will be living some of the featured stories in the coming months. Oh joy. More pain.

In the last forty-eight hours, a confluence of circumstances have prompted me to begin noodling one of the first chapters, tentatively titled, "The World's Ugliest Person". Who is this hideous creature that I'll be exposing in Opening the Kimono-like raw detail? Me, of course.

I woke up yesterday morning with one overriding thought: I am officially the World's Ugliest Person, at least at that moment. Bleary-eyed from a disastrous night's sleep in which I had nightmares about running into the most foul of creatures from middle school, I looked at myself in the bathroom mirror. In the cold, harshness of the early morning light, I did NOT like what blankly stared back at me.

While looking at my reflection, I discovered:

* A three-inch, beet-red blotchy burn the size of a small hot dog emblazoned on my left cheek, courtesy of an altercation with my curling iron

* A massive pimple explosion thanks to my upcoming period and consuming far too many mochas from Starbucks. My facial eruptions included several painful, unpinchable lip-zits which spontaneously appeared on the ultra-tender spot where my lower lip meets my chin

* A patch of unsightly grey roots nestled in my previously-blogged-about lion mane that my hairdresser inadvertently missed during last week's touch-up

* Deep pillow creases all over my face, including over the 3-inch hot dog on my cheek

* Pesky extra padding around my mid-section that quietly mocks me

* Scant remnants of the previous day's eyeliner which gave me a Marilyn Manson-as-linebacker look

I admit that I couldn't summon the balls to take a picture of myself at my most heinous, but I somehow found the nerve this morning. While not as super-scary as yesterday morning, I could still vie for Miss Ugly USA.

WARNING! View the following picture at your own risk!

So there it is. The World's Ugliest Person. A Glamour 'Don't'. The love child of Quasimodo and the Joker. I wondered how the hell I was going to have enough confidence to solicit speaking events to organizations in this ghastly frame of mind. I could just imagine it..."Mr. Event Planner, would you like to hire me to speak in front of 500 professionals so I can be stared at in horror and mocked en masse?"

Thankfully, with the help of my friend Shellie I was able to talk through my bilious self-judgment and realize that we ALL have the World's Ugliest Person days. There are some days where we convince ourselves that we too fat, too skinny, too pasty, too sunburned, too unkempt, too boring, or too damaged to be attractive to anyone, much less ourselves. It is the universal truth born out of our modern Western culture: I think therefore I think I am ugly.

Then I realize the glorious gift contained in my gruesomeness: I'm gonna write about this! It's funny! It's perfect for the book! People will relate to it! Hallelujah!

Even though I still resemble a troll-woman who got into a back-alley fight with a cat brandishing a branding iron, I am reveling in the fact that I received some juicy new material to write. I got a tasty shot of literary adrenaline that will propel me to tackle that most daunting of tasks: staring at a blank screen, waiting for my pain to turn into words which will eventually turn into inspiration.

How interesting it is that I chose a career where insecurity and vulnerability are its building blocks.


For your consideration and/or comment:

Do you have World's Ugliest Person days, and what makes them so?


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seriously? said...

OF COURSE...Many worlds ugliest days. Too many to count, really. Most of mine revolve around a much needed haircut and glasses and pimples. I truly thought I was out of that stage but, apparently not. Oh yes, and I cannot forget the "I ate way too much ice cream to feel even remotely good about myself so I better eat some more." phase. That one is fun too.

Anonymous said...

All I can tell you THANK GOD I'm a man and I don't have to deal with all that crap...

Do you have World's Ugliest Person days, and what makes them so?

Usually it's days when I'm too lazy to "really" get dressed... I'll just through on some sweatpants... and invariably I have to make a run to the store...