Embrace the suck

We often hear people use this term for a task which is pointless or unimportant, but still needs to be completed. It is going to suck. It is going to be painful or tiresome. But we the show must go…


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Chasing the Grail

Some resolutions work better without the deadline

Celebrating the New Year

THE SUN WASHED across the snow and into Susan’s dining-room window, blinding both her and her mother as they sat at the table sipping hot cocoa and waiting for the New Year’s parades to begin. Susan’s father had locked himself in the den with the HDTV to watch non-stop bowl games (with PIP window for overlapping games), his mini fridge stuffed with beer and brats, next to his portable tailgater grill with buns and condiments, and he would remain there until the last game ended.

Despite the glaring sun in their eyes, Susan stared emptily at the window. Susan’s mother dipped a chocolate-hazelnut wafer into her cocoa. “Thinking about this year’s resolution, dear?”

Susan shook her head and shifted in her seat and twisted her ring. “No, mom, I have one already.” She reached for her notepad and scribbled, “Finish my first novel this year.” She ripped it from the pad and slammed it next to her mother’s cup. “For the record.”

Her mother read the resolution, placed it back on the table, put on her glasses and read it again. “Are you sure, dear? That’s a huge commitment. Perhaps a short story or a couple of poems might be a better place to start.”

“I have an MFA, mother. I should be able to do something as simple as finishing a novel.”

Susan’s voice was firm, her demeanor so certain that her mother shrugged and placed the resolution on the refrigerator to motivate her for the next twelve months.

Susan knocked out the first three chapters in a month, then realized historical romance might not be the best approach for her heroine. So she deleted that file and launched into a post-modern, post-apocalyptic romance for which she pounded out six chapters by March when she realized her character was too conventional for life in…

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