Today is international Talk like a Pirate Day. Arrrr.
Coincidentally, pirates figure big and important in my paper, which ought to make it inherently exciting. Yet my paper is not. In fact, in my musings today (which was really all I wrote), I wrote this sentence: "This is full of pirates, FFS! How on earth am I managing to make that boring?!?"
And then I heard an interview with Jill Lepore on NPR, and I thought, "Love her work or hate it, but she knows how to write in a way that people want to read."
(I should note that this comes one day after I found out that my sister-in-law found my book less than gripping, and two days after receiving some rather dismal sales figures for the book for the last year. My confidence in my ability to interest readers is pretty low right now.)
And so I once again trashed what I had written, and went back to the conference paper I presented. And tomorrow, I get up, and try to think like a reader, like my sister-in-law, like Steve fucking Inskeep. Because I know this can be interesting. I'm just not there yet.