Friday, 8 July 2011

There's a noise coming from....aaaaargh

00:40:00 Posted by Lindsay 5 comments

Good morning. Who am I? I am a poet with a fear of writing. Why? The awful little voice. Not one attributed to mental illness thank goodness, and I’m not referring to my children either. At creative writing class I was asked to describe my inner critic. That’s the one. It’s there in most of us, and I think I’ll tell you a little about mine.

“Well there my little rat dropping, what’s this you’ve written?” The voice slurs. Miss Hannigan stumbles to the cupboard and pours herself another gin. She dots the air with a bony finger. “You’re not a writer, you’ll never amount to anything dearie. See that nonsense you’ve written? Everyone’s going to laugh at it my little rat dropping. You may as well do something else.”

She reaches for the worktop and misses, catching herself with her elbow. She salsas badly across the room trying not to fall. She sits across from me now, gin in hand. She tries to cross her legs, knocking the gin on the carpet. “You’ll have to clean that now. No time for this. People just feel sorry for you; they’re just being polite.” She tries to gather tendrils of the mop on her head, patting and smoothing. The result makes her look like an explosion in a wool factory. “It’s a hard knock life sweetie. This is the real world we live in. Stop being a dreamer. You’ve got a family to support now, just close the laptop and do something else, you’ll feel better.”

For those unfamiliar with Miss Hannigan’s character, she was a drunken orphanage owner in the 80’s musical Annie. She was comical, yet cutting and cynical. And she’s in my head. She picks her moments well, just when I’m about to begin something usually. Or she hovers over the delete button pointing and cackling. Many have their own critical voices, something which tells us our work is rubbish, and sometimes it’s right, but not always. It can help us write better. But sometimes it can hinder.

I do write poetry sometimes, Miss Hannigan might be right, but I can’t always take her seriously.


Ashley R Lister said...

I remember your Miss Hannigan inner critic! Good to hear the voices in your head aren't ones we should worry about.


Lara Clayton said...

You're too talented - able to write and draw! Great post, really felt able to relate to what you were saying.

vicky ellis said...

I am related to your inner critic but I daren't say how for fear of reprisals ;)

I second Lara and foresee a poem in which Miss Hannigan meets with an untimely demise :D

Ste said...

I think I've got the perfect life partner for Miss Hannigan living in my head. How does she feel about foul mouthed, abusive, agressive, right-wing drunken types?

Once again, another post that left me with a 'I wish I'd thought of that' moment.

Lisa Gilbride said...

Well then your Miss Hannigan's giving you good practice. You will inevitably be criticised in the 'real world', too, but a pissed and pent-up perspective's not going to help you develop. Give her plenty of company and she'll lose interest in you.

The text was great and I love the drawing, too...can't wait for next week's.