Thursday, February 7, 2013

Submitting Love Lines

by Deb Dudley
One of the biggest challenges for me as a writer is my desperate need for EVERYTHING I write to be special. Different. Mind-blowing. Sure, as writers we want our manuscripts to hit those buttons, but for me, I want every single little scrap of handwritten data or e-mail I produce to be gold-star material. Yes, I realize it’s compulsive. And no, most of the daily things I write are never gold-star-worthy. Sometimes, I have 2 or 3 revisions on a little note to my kid’s teacher. Instead of a simple line or two about my kid’s latest bout with the flu, I feel compelled to produce a full doctoral thesis on the impact the absence will play on my daughter’s ability to master the subject matter. In my infinite wisdom, I realize why I drive myself crazy with the words. I believe as a writer, people expect more from me. I expect more from me. So, to challenge my sanity, my oldest daughter has recently presented me with one of my toughest writing prompts ever. For her final year of elementary school, I will pay tribute to my daughter by purchasing Love-Lines in her yearbook. For a small fee, I will be allowed to submit a dedication of 25 words or less to my daughter. She will assume I spent a few minutes one afternoon jotting down some sweet sentimental thoughts. In reality, I will have logged hours worrying about the best way to compress all my love, hope and pride for her into one gentle heartwarming sentence. In the end, 25 words are not enough. But, 25,000 wouldn’t be either. My Love-Line submission to my daughter will read as follows: May you always be filled with as much joy as you bring to those around you. All Our Love, Mom & Dad


  1. So happy to know I’m not the only one. I TOTALLY do this.

    By the way, I’m trying to form a critique group for writers in the Chesterfield area. I’ve started a facebook page for it called “The Thoughtful Writers Society.” If anyone out there wants to join us, check out our description and join up!

  2. Very Sweet Hazel,
    You're right 25,000 words wouldn't be enough,but you did "gold star" work with the 25 words you chose!