Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Zoombombing, Tiger King, Kittens in Heat - Is Your Family Driving You Mad During Lockdown? This might be why
Now that we’re all home and living with our significant others because of CoVid-19 aka the coronavirus from Hell, it’s making some of go a little… Well, a little crazy. Why is this? Here we are housebound with the people we love with all our hearts and suddenly just listening to them breathe is making us want to throw knives when we really should just be so thankful that we’re not sick.
Are you feeling this way and freaking out about it?
Well, you are not alone. Not only is Covid messing with our anxieties, our livelihoods, our health and sending some of us into spirals of depression and grief, it’s also changing our routines and schedules and patterns and that can make us feel kind of vulnerable and off kilter.
This is where attachment styles come in. In her essay “Coping With an Insecure Attachment Style” on VeryWellMind on carriejonesbooks.blog, Marni Feuerman talks about how our attachment styles can be either secure or insecure and how they arise from our childhood.
“A secure style comes from consistency, reliability, and safety in one's childhood. As an adult, those with a secure attachment style can reflect back on their childhood and see both the good and the bad that occurred, but in the proper perspective. Overall, they generally feel that someone reliable was always available to them in their formative years. In adulthood, they enjoy close, intimate relationships and do not fear taking risks in love.”Feuerman
Who are these magical, well-balanced people? They are the ones who are chill and not freaking out about how their significant other is loading the dishwasher, that’s who they are.
The rest of us have three insecure attachment patterns, she explains, and those are avoidant, ambivalent, and disorganized.
THE THREE INSECURE ATTACHMENT PATTERNS
“Avoidant: Avoidant people have a dismissive attitude. They shun intimacy and have many difficulties reaching for others in times of need.
Ambivalent: Those with an ambivalent pattern are often anxious and preoccupied. These people may be viewed as "clingy" or "needy," often requiring much validation and reassurance.
Disorganized: The disorganized pattern is often the product of trauma or extreme inconsistency in one's childhood. Disorganized attachment is not a mixture of avoidant and ambivalent attachments—it is a far more serious state where a person has no real coping strategies and is unable to deal with the world.”Feuerman again
I am ambivalent AF. Gabby, our dog, is also ambivalent.
What do attachment styles have to do with writing?
Well, when you’re writing about relationships in a dystopian novel or apocalypse, you want to account for those different types of personalities and levels of attachment.
Is your character secure or insecure? What type of insecure?
Knowing that and their background can help you flesh them out and make each character not a carbon copy of you or of your other characters.
What does this have to do with life?
Well, I think you all know. It’s time to buck up and do the work while we’re social distancing to make sure that we can evolve to the best people we can be and not scream at our loved ones and not repeat bad behaviors. We can’t all afford psychotherapy and we can’t even go see a therapist right now, but a good thing to keep in mind is what Feuerman says,
“To earn security, you have to develop a coherent narrative about what happened to you as a child. You also need to explore the impact it has had on the decisions you may unconsciously have made about how to survive in the world. You have to think critically about how your upbringing affected your attachment style, and work on breaking those patterns.”Feuerman
That’s hard work, but it’s worth it. Nobody wants a criminal record or to go to jail during a pandemic. You’ve got this. Don't have Joe Exotic be your end story.
Writing Tip of the Pod
Think about your main character. Are they secure? Insecure? Why?
Dog Tip for Life
You’ve got to create a narrative that will help you be the best dog owner you can be. Dogs do this all the time. We’re hurt, abandoned, rescued and we create whole new joyous lives. You can too. Bacon helps.
Writing Exercise of the Pod
Think about your best friend’s mom. Think about your best friend. What is their narrative? Write it.
In our random thought (which you hear in the podcast) we talk about:
- Tiger King
- Kittens in heat
The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song? It’s “Night Owl” by Broke For Free.
WHERE TO FIND US
Over 180,000 people have downloaded episodes of our podcast, DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE, you should join them.
NEW PODCAST INTERVIEW EPISODES!
Starting this Thursday we're sharing bonus interview podcasts with cool people who exist. Check it out and critique Carrie's interviewing skills.
The Writing Course of Awesome
It’s our very own writing course!
Basically, it’s set up a bit like a distance MFA program, only it costs a lot less and also has a big element of writer support built in. This program costs $125 a month and runs for four-month sessions and starts in April 2020
To find out more, check out this link. It's only $125 a month, so it's a super good deal. Come write with us!
NEW BOOK OF AWESOME
I have a new book out!!!!!! It’s an adult mystery set in the town where we live, which is Bar Harbor, Maine. You can order it here. And you totally should.
THIS IS WHAT IT’S ABOUT
Rosie Jones, small town reporter and single mom, is looking forward to her first quiet Maine winter with her young daughter, Lily. After a disastrous first marriage, she’s made a whole new life and new identities for her and her little girl. Rosie is more than ready for a winter of cookies, sledding, stories about planning board meetings, and trying not to fall in like with the local police sergeant, Seamus Kelley.
But after her car is tampered with and crashes into Sgt. Kelley’s cruiser during a blizzard, her quiet new world spirals out of control and back into the danger she thought she’d left behind. One of her new friends is murdered. She herself has been poisoned and she finds a list of anagrams on her dead friend’s floor.
As the killer strikes again, it’s obvious that the women of Bar Harbor aren’t safe. Despite the blizzard and her struggle to keep her new identity a secret, Rosie sets out to make sure no more women die. With the help of the handsome but injured Sgt. Kelley and the town’s firefighters, it’s up to Rosie to stop the murderer before he strikes again.
You can order it here.
IN THE WOODS – READ AN EXCERPT, ORDER NOW!
My new book, IN THE WOODS, is out!
It’s with Steve Wedel. It’s scary and one of Publisher’s Weekly’s Buzz Books for Summer 2019. There’s an excerpt of it there and everything! But even cooler (for me) they’ve deemed it buzz worthy! Buzz worthy seems like an awesome thing to be deemed!
Order this bad boy, which might make it have a sequel. The sequel would be amazing. Believe me, I know. It features caves and monsters and love. Because doesn’t every story?
Buy limited-edition prints and learn more about my art here on my site.
Brought to you by Carrie Jones and Shaun Farrar of Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation