The errors we make when we buffet

I started my day with a Guatemalan breakfast. Then proceeded to snack the entire day on seaweed, grapes, and Chinese porridge. My stomach is confused by 3:55pm and I am kicking myself because my partners’ parents have decided to celebrate their 37 years together at a buffet in a fancy hotel. Crap. This means dressing up, hiding the extra pounds from his mother, and keeping the wild brown lady hair subtle and clean. Double crap. I hate when I have to present myself in public — especially public who judges me based on whatever their conceptions of brown people in LA are.

Why can’t life be a fantasy world of sweatpants and jeans with oversized tee shirts? I mean, I love dressing up sometimes – but not on rainy days when the house is cozy and the porridge has taken over just about all the spaces around my stomach’s walls.

I put on a black dress that hides a bit of my pooch. But frankly, when your pooch is bigger than your boobs – there’s no hiding it.

I try to stick to light salads and fluffy deserts and side dishes.

“I pay lots of money for you to eat salad? Come on! Eat some of the meats, the lobster!” his dad says to be. I smile and burp up a chunk of seaweed from earlier in the day. I had literally done too much.

The problem with me is, sometimes I listen to others and take their advice so much I forget to listen to myself and my body’s cues. You’ll find that when you’re truly honest with yourself, you will stop where you need to stop. I find this is true in writing as well. Why do we feel the need to fill up the pages until we reach the page count? What will that serve? Questions we must ask ourselves are:

  1. are we revealing too much?
  2. are we giving too much detail?
  3. is there too muchness in general that can be cut out?

Because when you leave space in your stomach, or in this case – in your writers mind – you’ll be apt to catch things you normally wouldn’t see. Like, maybe your character is missing a layer of dimension? Maybe your details are overpowering the plot and you’re being lost in details that might only serve purpose in a science lab. Or maybe, you fill up your plate so much you don’t let room in for your readers interpretation and reflection.

Too muchness can be a dangerous thing.

Take it from this chubby Latina who tends to over-snack. Sometimes, it’s good to leave things open ended. Your reader is smarter than you think. And what they fill in, might be more interesting that what you would ever come up with.



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