Pleasing Everyone

I don’t think there’s any strong book that is pleasing to everyone.

Garth Greenwell

For so long in both life and my writing, I have tried to please others. I have always struggled with fitting in, but I tried. I tried wearing the popular brands. To make my mom happy, I listened to her music. I curated my personality around other people’s whims.

It didn’t work. I was still hopelessly me. Even with my writing, I tried on author voices as though I was in a showroom, looking through carpet samples or paint swatches. To please one of my mentors, I tried to write like Hemingway. To please another, I tightened my prose and tried to stifle my lyrical language.

This didn’t work either. My voice always came through somehow. Now, though my writing voice adapts, I no longer write to please others. I write for me. If other people appreciate it or like it, that’s a great achievement. But lately, I’m simply writing what pleases me.

Hopefully, some day, this results in strong books others want to read.

Ps: Speaking of strong books, I’m working on creating a bundle of short stories. Interested? Let me know!

9 thoughts on “Pleasing Everyone

  1. I was a people-pleaser for years, yet never saw myself that way. Wasn’t until I saw others being like that, that I realized “That’s me and I better stop.” The minute you fix yourself, people stop sitting with you at the dinner table.

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    1. For me, it was an inevitable part of my childhood. I had to adapt myself for others to like me. My own mother didn’t like the person I was. When I got to high school age, I started saying, “Screw it,” and turned myself into a teenage rebel. Nothing too exciting, but for me, it was exciting to see who I could become.

      Then, that rebellion was stomped out of me for years and years. Now, I finally feel like I’m becoming true to myself. It’s just weird to be a few months away from 35 and discovering who I am.

      Who is meant to be here will find their way, I believe that. I just need to remember to stay true to who I am and not some version of me others want to see.

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      1. I mean, funny you mention that, I have been going through a lot of my old things lately and dealing with a lot of nostalgia. I don’t mind looking back at who I was, but I do realize that’s not who I am now.

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      1. Yes, it is a process! I had my final breakthrough when my father past away 10 years ago! I am only guaranteed to have myself and God always! so don’t lose neither one and do what is pleasing to him and that is a satisfying life/fulfilled living…
        thank you for the engaging converse! have a wonderful week ahead!

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      2. I’m so sorry it occurred when your father passed away – I think sometimes, losing people can wake us up. A fulfilled life is so important. I think too often, people get caught in the superficial fulfillment but for me, it’s what nourishes my soul. Have a fantastic week!

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