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Always the self-critic and perpetual editor, I should never read my own posts. Sometimes I do, like when I receive a comment long after the post is published and I forgot what I wrote. I saw an interview once where an actress said she never watched the dailies, which I learned are views of the previous day’s shooting. I can appreciate that now.

Sometimes I gasp as I catch a typo or missing word – how did I not see that before in spite of proofreading ad nauseum? Sometimes I feel the context is off. Did I make my point or was I too vague? Did I dive too deep or not enough? It’s not that I’m trying to impress an audience or draw the attention of publishers. I just blog for me, but I’m a tough crowd. For example, no matter how many times I read tips on the proper use of that annoying reflexive pronoun, myself, I am compelled to review the grammar rules each time. Thank you grammar girl!

I even read my own emails when I receive a reply, especially if the response is surprising. I try to detect what words prompted the return message, good or bad. What did I say to set this person off? OR Wow, I wrote that? Pretty damn good!

Rereading this post, I have essentially described myself as a cross between a masochist, perfectionist and narcissist. I prefer to think of myself as a continual learner. I am enamored with words the same way I enjoy puzzles, recipes and projects. There is gratification in gathering separate components and making them whole. Yes, I do look back and second-guess myself, relecting and often obsessing on how I could have made it better, but isn’t that how we grow?