Sundown tonight begins Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year, and the time during which we fast in order to “afflict our souls” and try very hard to focus on atoning for our wrongs (rather than counting the minutes until sundown tomorrow when we can eat and drink again).
In between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, Jews are ideally meant to apologize personally whenever possible to those we’ve wronged in ways big and small. While I am somewhat inconsistent about this practice generally (sorry) (<–there you go), I thought it would be interesting to try out a Writer’s Apology this year. Here goes:
- For not always giving you my best work, I apologize.
- For sometimes leaning on cliches, easy phrases and lazy writing, I apologize.
- For every mistake and unnecessary word that survives the editing process, I apologize.
- For failing to question my assumptions, especially about people and characters who are not like me, I apologize.
- For neglecting this blog, and other social media, and then getting frustrated when readers don’t rush to comment and share my words, I apologize.
- For giving negative feedback about my work a larger ear than the positive, I apologize.
- For worrying about what is marketable rather than what is compelling, I apologize.
- For failing to lift up others as I work toward my own achievements, I apologize.
- For not tempering criticism with kindness, I apologize.
- For not being brave enough to tell the whole truth, I apologize.
Ten seems like a good number so I’ll stop there. I hope my readers, fellow writers and friends will forgive my failures of the past year and help me to do better next year. Please feel free to respectfully comment with other things you think I (or writers in general if you don’t know me personally) could apologize for, or to make apologies of your own. I’m going offline soon, but I’ll check back in tomorrow night!
Wishing my Jewish friends an easy fast and a fulfilling holiday. And everyone else, a low-stress and fulfilling Wednesday. 😉
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