Of blind sows and acorns

"Sometimes even a blind sow finds an acorn" is one of those folksy sayings attributed to the Ozarks. I've never much liked this saying because (among other things) as someone who grew up raising hogs, I can tell you how a blind sow would find an acorn: she'd find it the same way any other hog would, by sniffing and rooting around. My objections aside, the point of the pithy saying about visually-challenged sows discovering acorny sustenance is that sometimes an ill-informed, poorly considered, or simply inexperienced person winds up being correct about something important, or at least correct enough. We are all the metaphorically blind sow sometimes, and occasionally we receive our acorn rewarding us for all that work sniffing and rooting.

I have gone on more than a bit around here about the importance of beating perfectionism back enough to share your work and of writing simply for the pleasure of it. I've even tilted at traditional publishing a bit. I'm pretty sure that not all of my thoughts have been correct, mind you, but I'm sniffing and rooting along as best I can, making an honest attempt at figuring these things out.

Over the holidays, I spent my time not jammed into shacks with my hillbilly kin catching up on reading recommended to me by various writing friends. I am probably the last aspiring writer in America to start reading Hugh Howey's blog and books, but at least I got there eventually. Thank you to all 147 people who told me to do so. I'm currently engrossed by Wool (my wife has told me it was time to go to sleep two nights in a row). In terms of finding acorns, I am both enlightened and encouraged by Mr. Howey's list of "Favorite Posts for Writers."

I won't detract from the articulate advice based upon the personal experience of a writer far more successful than me by paraphrasing it here, but you should go read it. After reading and re-reading Hugh's advice, I feel vindicated to have maybe gotten a few things "right" so far. More important than vindication, though, I have ideas for where to go from here with my work. I've found a few more tasty acorns you might say.

Now I have to get back to rooting.