FLATTENING THE LEARNING CURVE

Daily Prompt: I Have Confidence in Me – Are you good at what you do? What would you like to be better at?


Funny you should mention this. I was thinking, yesterday evening, that I’ve been writing for so many years … my entire life except for a few years before I knew which end of the pencil made marks … it has become like breathing. I just do it. I don’t plan projects, don’t struggle to say what I mean. Don’t get writer’s block. I can’t remember any time when I couldn’t write, though I have gone through periods when I didn’t want to write.

I blog because I’m going to write regardless and I need something to do with all those words. I love blogging. It’s the only writing I’ve done which isn’t a long-term project.

72-OIL-Cardinal-II_24

“Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof” is my motto these days. For writing and other stuff. What I don’t write today will wait. Tomorrow is a new day, a fresh slate. I can choose to write what I want. No thousand pages of unfinished manuscript is lurking on my desk while a printing deadline glows menacingly in the background.

Photography is a bit different. Pure pleasure. I’ve been an enthusiastic amateur photographer since I was in my early 20s. Although I earned a few bucks taking pictures here and there over the years, calling myself a professional photographer would be a considerable stretch. I gave it a brief try and hated it. I love taking pictures, but when there was a client in the mix, it stopped being unfettered fun and became work. Which, as we all know, is the original four-letter word. Just ask Maynard G. Krebs.

What else would I like to be good at? I’d like to get better at casting magic spells. I need more and better magic in my life. Otherwise? I’ll do my best to keep my existing skills sharp. Everything else? Nah. I’m retired.



Categories: birds, Blogging, Daily Prompt, Magic, Nature, Photography, Writing

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

30 replies

  1. Maynard G. Krebs…. now there is an ideal to strive towards! You rang?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely picture of the cardinal in the snow

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  3. Your photography is amazing! I’d like the magic spell proficiency myself, although I might be dangerous.

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  4. This is one of your best posts. It is an issue that we retirees, especially, run into. Unfortunately for me, since I’m not a song writer and gave up playing music years ago, the only way I can do what I love is to record for others. That means I have to endure the whims of clients.., but in some ways, it’s a challenge. If for no other reason than to see if I can still do good work and keep them coming back for more. So far my return business has been more than satisfactory with many clients returning repeatedly. But I do understand the threat of losing enthusiasm, when working for others. You just need to view it as an extension of your talents applied to different venues.., at least that’s what I do. It’s what I do that’s most important, not who I do it for.., unless the music is terrible. 🙂

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    • Luckily, I was able to earn my living writing, so I could save photography for a hobby. Writing was always been easier to sell. Because I was good at technical stuff, there was almost always work. There still is work, were I up to doing it. It’s ironic that I still get a lot of nibbles from headhunters, but I don’t have it in me anymore. The projects are too long. I don’t want another 1000 page book to write. With index and footnotes.

      I still get to write. I just don’t get paid for doing it 🙂

      Once, a long time ago (in Israel), I got paid for writing about music. That was one of my best-ever freelance gigs!

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      • As I get older the strength to tote that gear around is gradually fading away. So now I hire assistants to help me. I too am beginning not to have it in me.., but I’m determined to drag it out as long as I can.

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        • You love your work. It’s hard to love writing manuals for computers. Not the same thing. I wish I did love it that much, but it’s not that kind of work. It’s work we do for money. Good work, but not the work of love. I think developers feel more like you.

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  5. Amateur means one who loves, after all.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you. I didn’t know that, but it makes sense. I’ve never felt there was any stigma to being an amateur … especially when I AM an amateur. In photography, many of the most creative artists are amateurs. They take pictures out of love, not because someone ordered it.

      I gave up trying to be a pro when a did a series of head shots for an older woman (an amateur opera singer) who then complained I ruined her life by making her look old. She was 80.

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      • Dilettante means one who delights. Goethe was happy being both an amateur and a dilettante. He said he’d preferred to love and delight in what he did. ❤ That's funny about the opera star. It's like my (stupid) friend who has ALS and is 75 and is afraid to use her long-term care insurance to get herself any kind of real care because she might "out live it." And if she were to? She has a house worth millions.

        Liked by 1 person

        • People can be so weird. I don’t mind the weirdness. I just don’t want to work for them. It’s a lot easier to ignore when they aren’t your boss.

          I just re-followed you. Apparently WordPress unfollowed me from you anda bunch of other blogs this week. I noticed I wasn’t getting notifications, so I check my “bloggers I follow” list and sure enough, I was about a dozen blogs short. WP has some software issues to iron out.

          Liked by 1 person

          • That’s happened to me a few times. I lost Bumblepuppies for months and I think it kind of hurt his feelings, but I just thought he quit writing. We worked it out. 🙂

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            • It’s weird and has no pattern. I lose blogs I’ve been following for years and ones that are new. Sometimes, it takes me a while to realize they are missing because I get SO much email, it takes me all day to work my way through it and sometimes, I don’t get to everything the same day I receive it … so it’s easy to not realize something is missing. But I maintain their software has serious underlying issues they need to address. Sooner or later, something ugly is going to happen. This is the symptom of something going on “underneath the sheets.”

              Liked by 1 person

  6. We all could use a little magic in our lives.

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  7. And your photos are great. I agree that it is much better to take photos that you want to take and not what a client wants to take. And I enjoy your writing.

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  8. You are good at being you and I am good at being me. I really couldn’t warm up to this prompt somehow. Today was not a good blogging day, I had other stuff to deal with, so I was not very good at anything.

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    • If I hadn’t actually been talking about this last night with Garry, I wouldn’t have had anything to say. But we were talking about it, specifically, getting offers to write for other blogs and finding I’m not all that enthusiastic about it. I’ve been a professional writer my whole life. I never did anything else for more than a few weeks — usually between writing jobs. I commented to Garry it’s like him getting an offer to do some free reporting for our local cable station. He’ll do it because they don’t have money to pay someone, but he lacks enthusiasm. When you’ve done it forever, everyday, rain, shine, sick, or well — somehow, doing it again doesn’t have the invigorating effect it did.

      I guess I’m confident about my writing skills. Not that I’m the world’s greatest writer, just that I can say what I want to say when I want to say it and don’t have to struggle. I did this prompt too. It was still on the grid. I have since edited it for re-posting. I see no reason not to reuse some of my 3300 (!!) posts. Actually, I have to sometimes. I have bad days, too. That’s what archives are for.

      I love these pieces you post from the past. They are new to ME and even if they weren’t, they’d be worth rereading.

      Like

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