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Here in Iceland we have a pretty nifty word: siðblinda. The literal translation of siðblinda is "ethical blindness". Basically it is used to describe people who in English I would classify as either psychopaths or narcissists. The English language typically has a lot more words to describe various shades and nuances of meaning than the Icelandic language. (Or most languages, for that matter.) That's one of the reasons I love English. However, in this particular case, the Icelandic siðblinda just nails the meaning. People who are siðblind are unable to see the plank in their own eye. To them, ethics is a meaningless concept. They will bulldoze over you without a second thought, and only apologize if they can intellectually comprehend that not...

One of the worst things I do is when I start comparing myself to other people. I'm sure we've all been there. We look at someone else and see only what they have, and we lack. We become envious. We feel crappy about ourselves, because in the comparison, we inevitably come up short. Why is that person more [__] than me? Why does that person have more [__] than me? What am I doing wrong? What am I not doing enough of? ARGH. It's so incredibly destructive. And yet I fall into that pit over and over again. Not all the time. Not constantly. But occasionally, and sometimes quite hard. Usually when I'm feeling lousy about something with respect to my own life. And even...

In Doris Lessing's excellent novel The Golden Notebook, the main character, Anna, has four different notebooks in which she writes about the different aspects of her life. She struggles with this, and in the end somehow manages to combine the four different notebooks into one - her golden notebook. [caption id="attachment_817" align="alignleft" width="219"] A pretty accurate depiction of ...

Well hello! It's been a little longer than I had planned, mostly because you would not believe how many endless little details need your attention when you're publishing your own book. Meaning that - yes - my book is now out!! Also, I now have an Amazon Author Page. Huzzah! So, this will be my third post in a row about the publishing of my book and I promise it will be the last [in a row]. I know I could go on ad infinitum about how amazing and wonderful I think it is that authors no longer have to grovel at the feet of the gatekeepers to have their voices heard, and that "vanity publishing" is outgrowing its stigma, and "indie...

So, last week I started a post about the process of putting together a book for publication, but only got about halfway through when I had to quit because everyone knows the Internet's attention span doesn't last very long and I was already way over that limit. I had hoped that by this stage my book would have been released from its cocoon and already be making the rounds among my small circle of readers, but alas - I had not factored in the endless little problems that can arise in the building of a book. Little piddly technical stuff, like margins, and indents, and paragraph styles, and cover sizes, and how these and myriad other things behave when converted to...

As many readers will know, the release of my new book, Unraveled, is imminent. "Yeah yeah," I hear you thinking, "she's been banging on about this for months" - and you will be right. [Although I don't believe I've ever used the word "imminent" before. Just saying.] [caption id="attachment_752" align="alignleft" width="300"] The preview option on the KDP site shows my book cover as it would look on an iPad.[/caption] So I just wanted to give a brief rundown of what exactly is happening, lest some of you think I'll be talking about this fictional book forever and I probably haven't even started writing it yet [I have]. Also, I have a hunch that this may be useful for those of you who may...

Since I started writing about all this stuff I've been writing about, I've received a number of messages and emails from people who say they can really relate. Some say that they find my posts hard to read because it mirrors their own experience in a way that is difficult and painful. I understand. I think that when something gets to you in that way, it usually means that the wound has not truly healed - it is still raw and painful underneath the old, worn band-aid you managed to paste over it, way back when. [Or maybe not way back when - maybe even just yesterday, or last week.] I love getting feedback, and I am grateful that what I'm sharing resonates with people, even...

Years ago when I started seeing a shrink, I learned that there are ideal conditions by which a child develops in a healthy way, and when those conditions are thwarted, the child's development gets derailed. Those ideal conditions presuppose that a child grows up with two parents, in a secure environment, and is able to pass unhindered through all the stages of human development – such as learning to crawl/walk, use the potty, resolve the oedipal complex, etc. etc. If all of those transitions are successful, the child will grow into a strong and well-adjusted adult that is able to have healthy relationships and participate fully in life. If not, there will be problems. Of course this may be an oversimplification...

I have had such a strong response to the last post I wrote - thank you to everyone who has commented, emailed, messaged, or even spoken to me about it in person. Clearly narcissism is far more common than one might be inclined to think, and many people have been affected by this heinous disorder, in one way or another. To me, narcissism is an evil force. One of the best descriptions of it I have read is in M. Scott Peck's book People of the Lie. In the introduction, he writes that the word "evil" is "live" spelled backwards. His young daughter pointed it out to him. Such simple, clear-eyed logic; so perfect. Evil is the antithesis of life. It is anti-life. It...

Six years ago this week my mother died, and left behind an extremely painful legacy. It’s always hard when someone leaves this world with unfinished business. Death is so final, and at least while the person is alive, there’s always that small chance that maybe, just maybe, things might change. Whatever “things” might be. That differs for each of us. I guess one of the hardest thing to come to terms with is that someone is not the person you wanted, or needed, them to be. I will freely admit that I have struggled to come to terms with what my mother left behind. That final blow, which I wrote about here, was incredibly painful. However, I also realize that it was not...

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