Sunday, August 1, 2010

More About Miss Mousy U.S.A.

I held the above title for 15 years. My frazzled, untrimmed hair, saggy Land's End calf-length full black skirt (with elasticized waist), downcast eyes and lack of affect (some people thought I didn't have any feelings) I hoped signaled that I was a rebel artist, giving the world back as good as it gave. It gave very little. Not entirely because of my mousiness, but I realize now, looking back, that my appearance said:
  • My employer doesn't pay me enough, and although I don't have the nerve to change my situation, let me serve as a reminder that the poor are always with you.
  • I'm depressed and it's partly your fault.
  • To hell with bodies. Minds are what count.
  • I can see your inner beauty, so why aren't you astute enough to see mine?
  • I'm punishing the capitalist patriarchy for its unattainable feminine ideals.
  • I'm lonely -- but uninterested in commoners like you.
  • I'm at one with the wretched of the earth.
  • I've been abused; want to hear about it?
  • What, fuss about looks and manners while our planet is dying?
  • I'm above everything you think is important.
  • Please notice my awful suffering and help me.
Then, bit by bit, I began to re-connect with other writers and play the cards the world dealt me. The things that restored my self-respect were 1) fellow writers, 2) self-publishing, and 3) money. That's why I'm always urging fellow writers to join groups, self-publish, and ask for money when they work.


  1. We're writers, we're focused on writing. But everything we do, say and maybe even think is communication. Every time we come into contact with another human being, even indirectly or silently, online, on the sidewalk or on the phone with the 800 operator, we're chattering away about our inner world just as we do on the keyboard.

    I'm worth your time.
    This morning is so great!
    You're worse than a pothole, get the f*** out of my lane.

    Then the other person (mis)interprets our communication, and ends up thinking: Oh yeah, there goes Miss Mousy.

    Interesting goal: To communicate our silent messages as clearly & intentionally as we do the ideas in our best writing.

  2. I never knew you as Miss Mousy. To me you have always been strong (even a bit tough!), confident, smart, fit, spiritual, and just very, very cool.

    Still, I love this, because of course, the truth is how we see ourselves. As I look at this gloriously happy picture of you under your "About Me," you have clearly come a long, long way.