The Power of TWO

It’s that time of the month again—the first Wednesday, which means IWSG Meeting Day. But today is not merely another IWSG day; it’s the Two Year Anniversary of the group! That’s quite an accomplishment in a world where an online group has the life expectancy of a Miley Cyrus hit.

Diva Plavalaguna had to pass on the festivities.
Gall stones.

So to celebrate, let’s take a gander at how the Power of Two can help us writers overcome our insecurities:

It Takes TWO, Baby

Donny and Marie remind us to find yourself a good Critique Partner. After all, one can have a dream, baby; two can make that dream so real.

Write. Then REWRITE

Chang and Eng are much like your manuscript—a living, breathing organism that is constantly chang-ing (did you like that? Yeah…I thought it was pretty good, too). Unlike them, however, you’re not stuck with it for life. Write and then REWRITE (and rewrite, and rewrite).

“Today it’s MY turn to use
the extra lung.”

Feed Your Whimsy

What could be cuter than a dog in a TUTU? Nothing, I tell you, absolutely nothing. John Vorhaus, in How to Write Good, teaches you to cater to your fun side—let whimsy rule the page.

Believe In What You Write

It doesn’t matter whether a man can walk on water, it’s how he walks on land. Believe in what you write and stand up for those beliefs. Great things may come of it…just ask Bishop Desmond TUTU.

ACTIVATE, Don’t Procrastinate

The Wonder Twins had it right when they fist-bumped for motivation. Yes, it’s perfectly fine to take breaks in your writing to goof off on Facebook, but not breaks in your Facebook to goof off on writing. Be PROACTIVE in your career. WRITE!

Wonder Twin Powers, ACTIVATE!
“Form of: a bucket of water.”
“Shape of: a very thirsty camel.”

Know What to Keep and What to Toss

What’s that smell? It’s your MANUSCRIPT. A valuable lesson was learned from REO Speedwagon when they sang “Time for Me to Fly” on You Can Tune a Piano, But You Can’t Tuna Fish. Know which parts of your work make beautiful music and which parts make a rotten stench. Toss the piano.

Tuna Piano
Plus…it was just a damn good album.

The Magic Ingredient for a Bestseller is…RETSYN

Speaking of rotten stenches, have you checked your breath lately? Yep. Your mouth smells like that old tuna, and how would that go over on your Elevator Pitch? Not too well, my friend. Carry Certs for such occasions. It’s TWO, TWO, TWO mints in one.

Congratulations, Alex J. Cavanaugh, on two successful years of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! None of us would be here today writing about this if it weren’t for you. There wouldn’t be a group to write about. Seriously, my sincerest THANKS for all that you do!


ML Swift

InsecureWritersSupportGroupTwoThis post was written as a part of Alex J. Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group. We post the first Wednesday of every month and share our solutions to common difficulties, encourage other writers to meet their insecurities head-on, and seek supportive shoulders to tear-stain when we’ve received just one too many rejections. If you’d like to join the group (and we’d love to have you), follow the link to Alex’s site, grab a badge, and put your name on the list. I’ll see you next month!

Photo credits:


50 thoughts on “The Power of TWO

  1. Wow! That’s a lot of good thoughts for a post about insecurity. Finding good CP’s are the most important thing, I think. Sometimes, they’re the only way for you to know if you have the other bases covered well or not.

    Glad you’re part of the IWSG!

  2. This is one of my favorite IWSG posts ever. What a perfect way to celebrate the anniversary. Any post with a literal Diva Bitch and a Sicilian lady pooch is bound to be a winner.
    I was thrown by where you were going with the bad breath LOL. Love the old commercial. 🙂

    1. Julie, thanks. And yes, those dogs in tutus are priceless. The bad breath in the elevator…it can be horrendous. I’ve smelled that bad breath smell before trapped in a four by four space—not pretty.

  3. It has chocolate in the center!!!! Love.

    Swift, what an AWESOME post. Man, the fist bump alone has me all energized! LOL.

    You are FUNNY. This whole post is filled with awesome. I needed that. 🙂

  4. Ah yes, it’s that time again. The “I Was Seeking Gary” interaction project. Thank

    you so much! Okay, I’m awake now!

    All very worthy observations by you, my human friend. Although, we, my human and I have done it alone and have been very successful. We understand your inspirational and noteworthy posting. We write for therapy, for verbalisation, for a shared experience. My human and I are thankful that we just do our own thing.

    You know those harmless dog photos and the bottom of your post. You might have noted my human put up a photo-shopped photo on my latest posting. We got a comment accusing my human of animal abuse. Unbelievable and hurtful.

    All the beast, um best, my human friend. Big congrats to IWSG aka…..:)

    Stay chillin’,

    Snoop Bloggy Dog in da Gangsta’s Pawadise!

    1. Snoop…I did not know about your animal abuse issues. Those of us who love animals (and I can tell your human loves you) are appalled at such atrocities, and take offense when it is misdirected. I’ve got to go over and see the post. I didn’t realize you had posted anew.

    1. Liz…I kept checking my reader to see if you had posted and you hadn’t at the time. Been a busy afternoon, and I will be there to see your words of wisdom (or insecurity) later. Tis dinnertime and such. Thanks for coming by!

    1. I get all that from reading blogs like yours, Gus.

      And I took a lot of ragging for liking REO back in 1982, I’ll take the ragging in 2013. They were one of my favorite groups. Even had a poster. And one of the best concerts I don’t remember going to.

    1. I used to love D&M. My twin sister and I pretended to be them and sang this all the time. Also a few Brady Bunch songs, you know, when the kids were a singing group.

    1. It’s wonderful to be old enough to have a lot of fun memories yet still young enough to roll with the whimsy. I think I’ll always be that young. Thanks for the visit, Charmaine! 😀

  5. I loved your post, Michael. I should really focus on the “Write What You Believe In” more. Thanks for all your great tips, and big congrats to Alex and all the writers who participate in the IWSG!! 🙂

    1. I was trying to hit your blog yesterday, Lexa, but had TONS going on. I’ll definitely swing by today. I remember posting an interview with Anne Rice that said if you firmly believe in what you write, stand by it, no matter what.

    1. Yes, I’ve read your first two, Sakib—way to go. It seems like discussing Social Media is right up your alley. Anything I can do, just ask. Thanks for coming by. 🙂

  6. Okay, so the Certs bit totally took me by surprise. I particularly love the part about how you walk on land. Sometimes those little snippets feel all schticky but that one really worked. And, geez, weren’t the Wonder Twins always taking the form of water–steam, ice, Niagra. That was a go-to incarnation, for sure.


    1. You actually commented while I was in the midst of changing some of that verbage. I had heard that way of describing breath and went with it, but it wasn’t really me. I was just a middle-aged man trying to be a little edgier than I am in reality!

      Oh, and the Wonder Twins…he always changed into some form of water; she always became an animal. And yes, I saw the Niagra Falls episode. Thanks for coming by, Suze.

      1. Just chuckled happily.

        I actually swear in RL, as you put it, but try not to on the blog. It usually doesn’t work! And actually, last night at dinner I heard a guy swearing up a storm in another booth and embarrassing you know what out of his dinner companion and thought to myself, now I remember why I only typically let fly with my husband, who knows me and loves me. Cussing is not attractive.

  7. You just won my vote as the blogger who’s best at following his whimsy. I can’t believe I so idolized Donny and Marie, and I wanted to marry Donny. What was I thinking? Wonder Twin Powers and Certs breath mints made a kid feel like she could do anything. This was very fun and amusing, Mike.


  8. The power of two… If you only know how much I’ve been thinking about the power of two, and even before reading your post! I’m actually looking for the power of two, I’m wondering now if you would be available to team with the dragon. It’s not a critique partner that I seek. I’m done with The Artist’s Way. At the end, as surely you know, it recommends you read it again, and do the homework along with someone else. I’ve not been able to do this as I need that someone else. I had been pondering for long if you may be could.

    1. Yes, I agree. Just the other day my insecurities were out in Full Glory and I was a sniveling, no-good, wild-haired, no talent crouching in the corner with a Kleenex and blankey. I ought to write about those days! Thanks for coming by, Nina!

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