When Sally Cronin included me in her list of 10 nominees for The Miranda Sings Award – A chance to say I Love Me! A list of 7 things you like about yourself. I admit to quaking in my boots.
Sally’s piece had all the unmistakable qualities that characterise her as a wordsmith par excellence: that beautiful, fluid, economic style she uses to reach into the heart of each story without ever letting the reader stray, and the effortless aria-like leaps from analysis to emotion and humour she accomplishes, often on no more than the turn of a single phrase. Read her piece here:
Then Shehanne Moore came along with her unique brand of clear intelligence and absurdist surreal zaniness. Cleverly (What else would you expect from Shehanne Moore?) she got one of her secondary characters to answer the 7 things she liked about herself. Highlighting the trap many new authors fall into: For a book to hook in readers it’s not just the primary characters you need to believe in, it’s all of them. Read her piece here:
Shey and Sally’s approach to using words as psychopomps (guiding you through labyrinths of mind and emotion) may be chalk and cheese but both are equally brilliant and equally devastating for any poor bugger who has to follow them! No matter what I did at this point, I would be no more than a pygmy standing on the shoulders of giants.
To make things worse, I’m not a great one for opening up about myself, but that’s ok because one of the things I like about me is I’m bashful. I like that I’m happy too. Ok, I know I can be dopey and even grumpy sometimes, but that’s only when I’m sleepy, or sneezy, or maybe even a little doc.
So here it is… a list of 7 things I like about myself.
The first has to be my brain. Over the past decades it’s been promoted to my favourite organ. I like my brain so much I recently added it to my Organ Donor Card, so someone less fortunate can benefit when I’m gone.
The second is my sense of humour, even though I am aware if you have to spend a full five minutes explaining the joke, it can’t have been that funny in the first place.
Third: I’ve worked my way through all 7 deadly sins. To be honest I was never very good at wrath. And at this time of life I don’t think I’ll be revisiting lust anytime soon. But I’m still pretty good at envy and greed, and absolutely knockout in the gluttony and sloth department. As for pride: well, if you’re good at something where’s the harm in bragging a little?
I think I deserve some brownie points for working my way through 7 deadly sins, and the bulk of the 10 commandments. There are a couple I’ll never crack, like ‘thou shalt not kill’ for instance. Not unless you’re strictly Buddhist and count marmalizing bluebottles with fly spray. And then, there’s coveting thy neighbour’s ass. Although to be honest, when I was young and moved into my first apartment one of the neighbours did have a lovely ass.
Fourth are my green fingers (if you are British) or green thumbs (if American). I don’t care if it’s prideful or not, I have a green hand! Hell! I have two green hands. Perhaps I’m the whole Green Man.
Although I say so myself, considering I’m 700 feet up a hillside in the Brecon Beacons I have pretty good success with seeds and cuttings, and over wintering plants from more favourable climes in this other Eden; this demi-paradise; this fortress built by Nature; this precious stone set in the slate grey sky; this blessed plot of earth; my realm, my England, or at least my Englishman’s garden in Wales.
Fifth is the fact that come sun or rain, mainly rain it must be said, I feed the birds every morning. I really don’t do much to make the world a better place so I am proud of doing this. It makes me feel like St Francis of Assisi. I still don’t know how he managed to preach to them. Every time I open my mouth, they scarper. Since living here the sparrow population has exploded. When I’m out in the garden for any length of time they sit on the fences and in the bushes scolding me because they can’t get to the food. It’s quite unnerving, like something out of Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’.
In addition to the birds we also feed a shrew, a mouse and used to feed a rat until one day two turned up. Now believe me rats are really cute. So cute you just want to grab one and cuddle it, if you don’t mind losing a couple of fingers. But two rats. Oh no. Two rats is a recipe for bubonic plague.
Six, I like the fact I’m evasive and never give a straight answer about myself. Believe me it’s an art form.
And last but not least, has to be my writing. I mean I must have something. You’re all really smart and I suckered you lot into reading to the end!
The last rule is that I have to nominate 10 more bloggers. No easy thing to do because I don’t really know 10 more bloggers who are not already nominated. So thanks, but I’ll pass. If however you are moved to confession then feel free to nominate yourself in the comments boxes below.
The rules are:
Announce your win with a post, and link the blogger who nominated you.
Include the featured image on your blog post.
Nominate 10 bloggers (or as many as you can think of) and link your awardees in the post.
List 7 things you love about yourself. (This can be about your appearance, your personality, your achievements, etc.) Don’t use negative connotation (i.e. Don’t say things like – “I’m prettier than an average person.” or “People have told me I’m smart.” You are pretty. You are smart.)