The airing of the grievances

You’ll recall that “the airing of the grievances” is a Festivus tradition. At this moment, I have approximately an hour and forty-five minutes left of Festivus, so I intend to air a major grievance.

With myself.

Dear Madeline,

I am writing this letter to you in lieu of a Festivus card because I am very concerned about you. You are behind on your work. This is unacceptable.

Don’t think I don’t hear your “But, but, but-” from here. I am intimately acquainted with each of your excuses. They are all equally crap. Shut the fuck up and get back on the horse.

For some reason lately, your stories have been getting away from you in the climax. It’s like they’re afflicted with anorgasmia, or some other disorder. You take these long breaks between writing the set-up and writing the conclusion. What the fuck is that? When did this become so difficult? Putting specific words in a specific order is a thing you have always done, and will always do. It’s one of the few things you’re good at. So don’t lose it, or you’ll really be fucked.

You are letting a lot of people down. Stop. Work it out. You are far too concerned with doing this right the first time, when in all likelihood this draft is shit and you’ll have to do some serious sculpting (or perform some alchemy of editing) before it’s anything more than shit. You are not special. You are not gifted. You have no magical power to do this right. What you do have is an opportunity.

Stop wasting it.

Get back to work,


…I feel better now.

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