Friday, January 11, 2013

Fess Up Friday: I Like Wearing Old Lady Shoes

My most frequently worn footwear for the last couple of years is a pair of flat-heeled brown ankle boots styled for more mature women. These boots are not what the fashion obsessed would call the most trendy or stylish. Critics might even refer to these as "old lady shoes," but whatever. I can easily walk and run and chase after my toddler in these puppies. 

There used to be a time when I went out of my way to tough it out in "cute" shoes (e.g. strappy stilettos, high-heel boots) wherever I went.  I still wear these cute but less comfy shoes for special occasions. I'm just careful not to wear them for too long-otherwise, the shoes start pinching my toes and feet, and I might even begin to limp.

Finding my niche(s) when it comes to fiction writing is a lot like settling in the shoes most right for me. While it might seem convenient to write the kind of story that is trendy and of-the-moment, the process of writing, editing, and revising a story that's not truly the right fit for me could result in some serious mental blisters. On the other hand, writing a story that unveils what's in my heart is like slipping into a perfectly snug pair of shoes that cushions my feet from all around.

The importance of wearing shoes that fit right can also apply to choices we make in other aspects of our lives, such as our careers, relationships, and extracurricular activities.

I prefer strutting over limping, don't you?

Tell me about your favorite pair of shoes and/or your specific niche(s) in writing. Have you ever worn metaphorical shoes that didn't fit in an area of your life? What did you do about it?

Update 1/12/13: From reading my wonderful readers' comments so far, I feel there's something I need to clarify. My message here isn't about encouraging people to stay in their comfort zone. Sometimes when you're being creative, it's fine to venture out of your comfort zone. What I'm trying to convey is that it's okay if you're not a trend follower, and that there is comfort in doing what fits and feels right for you over doing what everyone else seems to be doing. =) 


T Drecker said...

Stylish shoes? What's that? Like you, I'm happy with the right pair of stompers. Stylish doesn't work with kid chasing well. And you're right with the writing. It's hard to write what doesn't 'fit'. But I've learned that we don't always knows what fits, if we don't try it on. Sometimes it surprises me which 'shoes' were the 'right' ones. (was that confusing?)

S.P. Bowers said...

I prefer barefoot over shoes if at all possible. I LOVE cute shoes, but I always go for comfort. Same with writing.

Julie Dao said...

I have ALWAYS preferred being comfortable over being stylish. I only wear heels for special occasions (weddings, New Year, etc.) and I always, always feel like chopping my feet off afterward. Cute flats for me, please! The same goes for my writing... I try to go with what fits best and is most comfortable, but I do try to get out of the comfort zone occasionally.

Elsie Amata said...

I love your analogy, very spot on. Right now I'm in the process of challenging myself with new things although it puts me outside of my comfort zone. For my novel thought, it's all about comfort. I'm nice and cozy!

Anonymous said...

I fantasie about being one of those women who can strut all day in 5 inch heels, but sadly, that is a dream. I run around in my classic adidas and flat black biker boots when I need to get dressed up.

I am pretty entrenched in my genre of romantic comedies, but I enjoy writing horror short stories. Something I discovered recently, so I am going to give it a try as a full length novel. Kind of opposite ends of the spectrum, but I think It makes me a better writer.

Sherry Ellis said...

I like tennis shoes. They're very comfy, and I can zoom all over without tripping on my feet.

Unknown said...

I have huge feet. Size 11. No lie. I'm really tall, and I've always said if I had smaller feet I'd tip over, but still, finding cute, women's shoes with feet this size (that aren't made for a drag-queen) can be daunting. Did you know JCP and Sears don't even carry shoes over size 9? SO, I guess I'm freakish. I don't fit the mold. And neither do my shoes. I have three pair that I wear constantly, and have for two years. (I'm old and a mother, therefore my Diva days are over.)
So, how can I merge this metaphor to my writing?
Hmmm. Flowery in tone, European in setting/style and well-crafted. Worth every penny, and never out of style.
Cool blog, Cynthia. I would deifnitely call you a pretty pair of espadrilles. Found you through IWSG. Nice to meet you and I look forward to reading more!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Good 'ole sneakers for me. And my niche is science fiction - space opera. Although I am willing to branch into other areas of speculative fiction.

Daisy Carter said...

I adore this post (as I do most of your posts!).

I wear gray knit uggs - had them so long there's a hole in the toe, but I refuse to throw them out and am too busy or unbothered to mend them - or shiny red patent leather flats when I want to dress up my jeans.

I write contemporary YA. I guess that does kind of fit. :)

Cynthia Heart Books said...

T. Drecker: No, not confusing at all. Sometimes we have to try different things before we discover what fits.

Sara: Yay for comfort!

Julie: Sometimes I step out of my comfort zone too.

Elsie: Sometimes I think it's healthy to challenge ourselves in our creative projects.

Sydney: Good luck with the novel!

Sherry: I like the idea of zooming in our footwear.

Jill: Aw, thanks! Nice to meet you!

Alex: Yay, sneakers!

Daisy: Your uggs sound very comfy!

T. Powell Coltrin said...

I like to try new trends in both clothing and writing BUT you can't beat the classics. And there lies my loves -- classic everything.


BR Myers said...

I love this post!

I broke my foot last September, and when the cast FINALLY came off I could only wear stiff, flat shoes. I bought my first pair of Doc Martens!!!

Shiny black patent leather boots. It was a definitive moment for me. I have total street cred now. I am cool. And I have great arch support.

Lynn Proctor said...

i love this post----hmmm--i don't wear--too many cute shoes anymore--but a lot of them in my closet don't fit into my world metaphorically or otherwise :)

Nicole said...

I do like fun shoes! But I will just as easily wear a comfort pair so I can focus time and energy elsewhere, without worrying about footwear. :)

Cynthia Heart Books said...

Teresa: I'm a back-to-basics kinduva gal too.

Bethany: Sorry to hear about your foot...Those shoes you describe sound very edgy!

Lynn: I hear you!

Nicole: Comfy shoes do help us better focus on the other stuff.

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