Mark Terry

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Mr. Terry's Neighborhood

December 6, 2009
Blogger Michele Emrath recently cited my blog as an interesting one to visit, noting "It's not a child's playground."

No, I suppose it's not. There are, I'm sure, writing blogs that stick to the positive. People who know me well would probably assure me that I'm not that guy.

The Divine Ms O comes a lot closer, although I find in her blog many of the same themes I cover, just with a less brutal point of view. She's ahead of me on this journey and I hope I can come to her level of acceptance and positivity and kindness in time. The word "sensei" is often interpreted as "teacher" among martial artists, but the translation is closer to "one who has gone before," and in negotiating This Writing Life, The Divine Ms. O is definitely one of my senseis.

Michele's comment made me think, and it's not a criticism. I think she was correct in her assessment that my blog THIS WRITING LIFE has its up-days and down-days. It's a sort of chronicle of my own writer's journey and my writer's journey has been long and hard, in many ways. I've had a lot of failures, a lot of perceived failures (ie., I think they're failures, but other people on the outside might not think so), some terrific successes and a lot in between.

I recognize, for all my observations and yes, even bitchin', about the publishing industry, that I'm probably my own worst enemy. I think I used to sabotage myself more than I do now, but I'm sure I'm still capable of creating my own worst traps, then walking head-first into them. I know that I view my successes with wild skepticism, tending to view them as luck (or not as successes at all, Ye Olde Half-Full Cup), while viewing my failures as confirmation of my worst fears and/or failings. (Find a successful person, and I realize I probably am, and you'll probably find someone who thinks they're fooling everybody, at least part of the time).

Although I'm not always positive, I do try to be honest, with you and myself. The diamonds aren't always cut and sparkly, the woodwork hasn't always been sanded smooth and varnished. It's just what it is, and hopefully it has value to you. Ultimately the blog may be my way of figuring out what I really think and feel about things in my writing life.

So if you're new to Mr. Terry's Neighborhood, welcome. Just know, it's not always a safe neighborhood and there's some real thugs and bad elements here. But that, I think, is life, and that, I think, is also part of what being a writer is all about. The creative life can be a lot like picking your way through a mine field and it's possible, hopefully at least a little bit, that my journey will show you a path through the mines.


Blogger Paul Greci said...

Yes, the divine miss O is pretty amazing. I'm a daily visitor. I found your neighborhood by hanging out in hers.

My blog is just a couple months old.

Thanks for sharing a little more of yourself today.

3:21 PM  
Blogger Natasha Fondren said...

LOL! :-) A good description of Mr. Terry's Neighborhood. It's a fun place to hang out. And you're more positive then you realize, often. :-)

Well, you keep trudging along, don't you? Actions speak louder than words, sometimes...

5:02 PM  
Blogger Erica Orloff said...

Aww, Mr. Terry. You're showing your inner softie.

I love your blog--and I am so delighted by the pals I've made on mine.


1:17 PM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Won't you be my neigh-bor?

1:23 PM  
Blogger Jude Hardin said...

I'm still trying decide whether I want to be a thug or a bad element. I need to ask Parrish which one he wants.

2:14 PM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Jude, I can sort of see you as the thug. It's the hairstyle.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Michele Emrath said...

This is exactly what I meant. It is not necessarily negative, but blunt and honest. It's your point of view and, hey, it's our blog!

Glad you stopped by and read my comment. I had fun writing the blurb about you.


5:00 PM  
Blogger Michele Emrath said...

Uh, I meant it's YOUR blog!

7:43 AM  

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