Criticism,  Personal growth,  Writing advice

Owning our mistakes

“Mistakes are a fact of life. It is the response to the error that counts.” ~Nikki Giovanni, American poet and activist

It’s one of the realities of being a journalist or a published author: The mistakes you make on the job are glaringly public and might remain in print forever. I recall times I made errors that were, luckily, caught by my editors before they made it to print. But sometimes they weren’t caught — and I was humbled when readers pointed them out. (You really need to grow a thick skin in this business.) As sociologist Brene Brown advises, if you’re going to put yourself out there, expect to get your ass kicked.

But here’s the thing: Every human being makes errors, in every field you can name. Even when there isn’t a tight deadline to blame. If you’re lucky, people eventually forget or overlook the mistakes you made, especially if you handled them with a graceful apology and an offer to make amends. ~CL

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Throughout my career, I've worked as a book production editor, travel magazine editor, features writer, and weekly newspaper columnist. My award-winning lifestyles features and essays have appeared in many national magazines and anthologies, including Newsweek, Reader's Digest, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest, Victoria, Better Homes & Gardens, Bella Grace, and more. My weekly Sunday "Life Lines" column ran for 14 years in The Daily Tribune (Royal Oak, MI) and won a First Place (Local Columns) award from the Michigan Press Association. My essay collection, Writing Home, includes 93 previously published columns and essays focusing on parenthood and family life.

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