Oh, goody. My morning Tarot reading implies impatience.
The 3 of Wands–looking for something to come in. In the card, you can see the character gazing off at ships on the water and waiting for them to eventually show up. You can see the detail better, here:
Meanwhile, Temperance has often meant balance in all parts of life, moderation and of course, patience. When it’s in reverse, it can indicate that these things are lacking.
Put them both together and Bibbidi-bobbidi-boo, y’all: impatience. A sign to reflect. I don’t know that being impatient is always a bad thing. Like being angry, sometimes that feeling shouldn’t be squashed immediately but rather used as information.
I ask myself, with what am I being impatient?
As it turns out, I have a short list!
People I’ve not heard from in ten years opening a conversation with “Can I have a free reading?” Not okay.
My crazy-ass novel. After a few months of clicking and clacking along like a good little author, it stalled again this week and I’m working to revive it. Sometimes, that involves blogging about things that annoy me.
Unsolicited advice. This week, I participated in the hashtag: #thingsonlywomenwritershear. Here were mine:
It was meant to show some solidarity with other women and perhaps wrestle out a few laughs. Lots of people took them that way….and lots of people dropped a lot of unsolicited advice. Most of those people were men: “You should have responded xyz…”You should be angry….” “You shouldn’t let this bother you…” “Here’s what *I* think about your writing….” The sentiments were all very loving and well-meant, but to have just shared examples of men downplaying my abilities to and expecting me to be open to their opinions and be met immediately with mens’ opinions about how I should have responded to these things left me like this:
Come on, dudes! I know you meant well…but let’s take a minute to internalize the messages from a hashtag such as this. Sometimes, a person sharing their experiences isn’t looking for advice, they’re simply sharing their experience. It also makes the assumption that I never thought of your suggestions, or that dealing with sexism in the writing world is as easily fixed as changing my attitude about it. I could not let it bother me until the end of time, yet it wouldn’t change the fact that there are people out there who won’t read my books until someone else can convince them that I’m a credible source. I then will wonder if it’s it my education (do they only read books by writers with Ph.D.s?) or with my female name. No matter my feelings on the matter, and while there are always individual exceptions, men in general will not have to ask these questions. Simply saying, Know your worth first of all implies that I don’t know my worth, and second, Knowing my worth doesn’t stop less-experienced men writers from offering unsolicited feedback on my work…or expecting me to be nice and take time out of my day to listen to their less-experienced opinions and if I don’t, have to take time out of my life to ignore a rumor that I’m inflexible, unapproachable, whatever. Despite what your mother probably told you, ignoring people takes more energy than you think. It also doesn’t change the fact that publishing under a woman’s name still means readers may be less inclined to take you seriously and you may sell fewer books than if you used initials or a man’s name.
Ack! I just remembered a time when a man emailed me accolades about Brigid and offered to translate it into another language for me. It was a kind offer, but it came in on a Friday afternoon and I took the weekend away from correspondence to spend time with my beloved husband. Come Monday, I had an angry message from him, saying I “needed to work on my relationship with fans.” Really, dude? You couldn’t give me a weekend with my husband? Did you really expect me to drop everything and answer your inquiry, immediately? Did you assume you were the only person to ever offer me such a thing? Good lord.
To writers out there who are women of color dealing not only with this but with racism, too, I salute you. Good Gods, do I ever…
Meanwhile, in Oakland this weekend!
I’m speaking at The Sacred Well on Working with the Goddess Brigid! If you’re in the area, please join me! If not, let your Goddess-history-Magick-loving friends in the area know all about it!