The theft of feeling

That title sounds rather spiritual, but I am talking about simple, white air drying clay in actuality. I have come to slowly notice that making clay objects in the vacuum of my private inclinations and my blue striped bed sheets has relieved my puritanical guilt. I’m content making objects I don’t understand and which I don’t care if anyone else enjoys. I been making teeth (pendants), tiny tooth/tree like bowls, forest spirits from Princess Mononoke, vases and phallic objects that look like little deities.


Creating has ended up being the best way to alleviate my feelings of uselessness and being an underachiever. Centrelink keeps me alive, but does little to improve my self esteem. Reflecting on how well I did at school and Uni also doesn’t help. Finding fulfillment and income from writing alone has been disheartening and impossible.

At some point I started making clay absurdities and it was during that focus that I noticed I wasn’t thinking about how crap I felt or my feelings of failure (despite my proactive and determined efforts to follow my dreams). Working with clay also reminded me of how many people are successfully selling their art online and also create just because they love it. There is an endless frustrated relationship between making art and making a living, but settling into just making for a while has been therapeutic.

The “scary” article published

doing it_lip

It happened very fast! One day I heard back from Lip and they were saying they wanted to publish my piece, the next day it was on their website. It was the fasted ‘submission to print’ process I have ever been involved in. Perhaps because I spend an inordinate amount of work on this article, so it needed very little fixing up.

It’s a little bizarre, having happened so fast though. I spent far too long fretting and feeling doubtful about submitting it but it has taken very little to get it published. My worries meant I had it edited by two semi-professionals and I did an immense amount of re-reviewing myself, which contributed to the piece being good. But I am left feeling a little flat. Most of  that anxiety was misplaced. My impression now is that it mostly hindered me.

Take it from me, unless you are going to be paraded around as a genius once you submit your manuscript, short story or poetry, the months/years of doubt won’t necessarily feel like they have been made up for or balanced out. I’m relived and grateful to be published by Lip. It’s been a small dream and goal of mine since 2012. But I might have felt a bigger high about it though, if I had not spent so long procrastinating over the one article.

Submit sooner, I say.

the oblique encouragement of an online quiz

I don’t put a lot of my trust in online quizzes but when one is based on the psychological work of Howard Gardner, I don’t discount it. In my ever craven search for more information on my future job/career path, I found myself drawn to this quiz and to finding the book it was based on.

Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligence Theory was first published in Howard Gardner’s book, Frames Of Mind (1983), and quickly became established as a classical model by which to understand and teach many aspects of human intelligence, learning style, personality and behaviour – in education and industry. 

I came out as highest in Linguists:

You enjoy saying, hearing, and seeing words. You like telling stories. You are motivated by books, records, dramas, opportunities for writing. Effective techniques of enhancing your learning using your language intelligence include reading aloud, especially plays and poetry. Another idea is to write down reflections on what you’ve read. You may also enjoy exploring and developing your love of words, i.e., meanings of words, origin of words and idioms, names. 

I was also strong with self awareness and spatial skills. This stuck me as true, but also had the unusual effect of encouraging me to further consider retraining/furthering my training within the realms of language, writing, editing: linguists. I’ve still got plenty to consider but taking this awareness to a careers advisor in the future could be useful. It all helps.


I did a scary thing…


I finally submitted an article to Lip magazine. I started writing about a specific issue to do with human sexuality about a year ago. I was encouraged by a great friend who read my ideas on tumblr, to consider publishing. So I fleshed out the ideas and had it looked at by two exceedingly competent editors. I had my friend look at it again too. By that stage he was a lecturer at the University of Canberra and I trusted he could give my work a good polish. That he did! I love a tough but kindly spoken, detailed editor. 

I’ve been re-editing it for far too long. It was the nerves of submitting to a publication I worship that got in my way. But I eventually pushed through that and ended up with a scrupulously scrubbed piece of work. I submitted the article today! I am ridiculously proud of what I have crafted (and hand crafted with care and love, it is). 

I’m feeling positive about how it will be received. But most of all I’m proud that I persisted with this article and through my lack of confidence.