Here chronicles my virgin visit to downtown Raleigh’s Krispy Kreme on Peace Street. I have lived in North Carolina for four years and had never been to this iconic establishment. Last fall I realized that in all my time in NC, I had not yet been to Krispy Kreme, Cook Out, Char-Grill, Bojangles or the Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen. One-by-one I am crossing each off my list as I approach the 5-year anniversary of my move to NC later this year. (Don’t worry, I have a gym membership.) Because, really, how could I call myself a true North Carolinian?
Did you know that when you walk into this Krispy Kreme and ask for hot doughnuts the staff just turn around, scoop the doughnuts (above) straight off the conveyor belt and into a box for you to take home? Did you know this Krispy Kreme is open 24 hours? And they have a drive-thru? I don’t have Krispy Kreme stock or anything, but isn’t this amazing?! I want to go back and try every flavor. Why did I not know about this? It is very rare I have a doughnut or fast food. (Seriously, I had McDonald’s French fries on my trip to the Atlanta Writers Conference in November for the first time in over a decade!) However, I was in bind last month and ::gasp:: went to Chick-Fil-A. They gave me a promo card for a free breakfast every month until May.
Me! The shunner of the fast food!
Yet, it’s free food. And although I still stand strong behind the truth that I am a writer and have never eaten Ramen noodles, I don’t want to turn down a free meal.
This week I went to Chick-Fil-A for my free February breakfast. I had a choice of their chicken or sausage breakfast burrito. I always like to hear the employees’ advice when buying anything, so this is how it rolled:
“Which do you recommend, the chicken or the sausage?” I asked.
“Oh, I’ve worked here six years and I’ve never eaten anything,” said the Chick-Fil-A associate. Her smile curled up in a polite and mysterious way, which would have given the Mona Lisa something to pine for.
“Okay, well, since this is Chick-Fil-A, I’ll go with the chicken. When in Rome, right?”
She nodded. But something tells me if she didn’t believe in the food she was serving, she didn’t believe in the nod.
How many times do people devote years of their life to something they don’t believe in? I come across writers all the time who preface their work by saying “it’s a rough draft,” “this is from a few years ago” or “I don’t feel right calling myself a writer.” Everyone is looking for reassurance and for people to believe in their work, but you need to learn to reassure yourself and show people your work is worth believing in.
Share your work with no reservations. If you’re doing your best, you have no pride to lose. It could be the best rough draft ever. Don’t dust off old work that you’re not happy with just to have something to send to an agent. If you don’t even want to re-read it and fix it, why would anyone else?
I had a difficult time enjoying my free breakfast because I was thinking how sad it was that the woman working there was selling stuff all day she didn’t believe in. (Okay, perhaps she has a chicken allergy. Or something.) The people at Krispy Kreme were super jazzed about their doughnuts. Maybe they didn’t believe in them, but they sure made me think so!
If you write, you’re a writer. Your attitude as a writer is as important as your writing itself. It’s not the quantity of words you write that denotes your literary status. Believe in your words. Even if you’re the only one. If it helps, write naked.