Monday was President's Day, and I spent the beautifully warm holiday showing my patriotism by doing taxes. I was pulling my hair by the end of it. All this time spent entering numbers for everything from mutual funds dividends to business start up costs to dental bills to the interest on my student loans, and none of it mattered. I made too little money. I might as well have just showed them my W2 form with a big "POOR" stamped on it.
The rest of the week got better, though, as I received subbing jobs on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday--or double the jobs I got for the whole month of January. In addition to the gleeful anticipation of depositing money into my dwindling checking account, one of the classes I got to sub for was English and (shock) I got to teach some of it. Which is always fun for me. I love to lead class discussions about areas I'm passionate about.
The sophmores were about to read Julius Caesar. We had some extra time in class and for a minute, I thought about reading my own version of Shakespeare's tragedy, "The Character Assassination of Julia Kaiser," but at the last second, I chickened out. It's funny, because I can do a dramatic reading of Shakespeare without batting an eye, but when I have to read my own work, I freeze. It's like--well, that time in drama when I had to do a dance monologue in front of the class. I feel embarassed and vulnerable.
Obviously, this is a bit of a problem, since, as a writer, presumably I'll have to read my work in front of others at some time. It's a skill I have yet to develop. Not just the reading, but gathering the courage to do it. To face the imperfections of my own work, while being judged by a group of people, any one of whom might shatter me with a yawn. It's tough.