The title of this post is a bit tongue in cheek, partly because I'm one of those people who enjoys spanking so don't ever feel like I need to "deserve" one. But I did want to say that as the new year settles in, I'm finding it challenging to catch up on everyone I want to interview, every article and story I want to write, every person I want to interview (aka, author of every book I'm reading, and there are several). You get the idea. One of my big realizations in 2014 was that I tend to take on a lot, because I'm very excited about lots of things at once, and that I need to slow down and be more strategic. Part of me thinks that if I only wrote about one topic, sex, I would be all set, because that's what I'm known for, that's what I'm asked to do readings about (like one coming up February 16th in Brooklyn!), that's what I teach writing workshops about.
As I gear up for a the start of a second sex column, I, stubbornly, am both excited about all these opportunities, and also itching to write about other topics too. It's a tricky balance, because sometimes I feel like the smart writers focus and own a single topic, whereas I am sort of bouncing around here and there with sex as the core. And yet, that interest in lots of different things is as much a part of me as my love of spanking.
I actually started this post thinking it would be a light-hearted way of reiterating my thanks; my editor told me my spanking column is doing well, which makes me happy. I write for an alt weekly, so unlike some online publications, I get the same rate whether one person reads it or one million, though I'm pretty sure if either of those things happened there would be cause for alarm and celebration respectively. But doing well matters to me, trying to improve, savoring the here and now rather than constantly looking to tomorrow/next week/next year/the future that may or may not ever come to pass.
Part of that taking on too much is about me fearing that any one thing I do, or even ten things, isn't enough. But it's a vicious cycle, because it's never enough, and that's when I wake up from work nightmares wondering how my dream job, where I get to wake up each day, brew a pot of coffee, and sit down at my laptop, has lost its luster. In reality, it hasn't; I have, and I'm trying to get it back, trying to fall in love with words again, with communicating, whether that's figuring out how to amp up a client's story or put my most embarrassing moments into essay form or try to ask someone questions they haven't been asked a million times before. The truth is, the only time I deserve to be punished is when I don't write, when I avoid writing, when I shun it because I'm afraid of it not being good enough. Then, trust me, I punish myself aplenty. So now I will go write in my already-neglected gratitude journal.