Phil Friedman

8 years ago · 2 min. reading time · ~10 ·

Phil blog
Conversations With My Wife About My Writing

Conversations With My Wife About My Writing

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »


Some Discussions Are Humbling

It's always seemed to me the the ultimate test of engagement is stand-up comedy. The distilled wit, the elicited imagery, and the delivery all have to be just right if it's to work. And I've always wondered if one could replicate the experience using the medium of the written, as opposed to the spoken word. So, for better or worse, here follows an experiment that is admittedly somewhat self-indulgent, but which I hope you'll find entertaining...

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »

I've been writing professionally for a long time. Sometimes for pretty good pay, sometimes for not so good pay. Either way, it's always involved the input of a lot of time and effort. So much so that my wife and daughters have, at times, bridled at my being constantly distracted, always walking around in a kind of thought-induced daze, and paying little genuine attention to what they were doing or saying. Being a kind of absent-minded professor — which I actually was in an earlier life.

As a result, my wife and I have, from time to time, had some far too candid conversations about my writing activities and would-be career.

For example, we were out one evening walking with our two dogs, when I told her I  really needed to get back home to do some writing...

She said snarkily, "Why don't you try writing a few checks, for a change."

Abashed, I told her I really thought I just needed to find some inspiration...

She replied, "How about settling for some perspiration in a paying job?"

So, I told her I didn't think that kind of sarcasm was funny...

And she said, "Neither is your writing."

Which I have to tell you kinda got to me, so I pointed out I really didn't appreciate her making those kinds of jokes at my expense..

To which she replied, "Well, I'd be happy to make them for free."

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »


But I don't want to give you the wrong impression... We weren't always at odds over my writing...

When I first started out as an aspiring wordsmith, I carried in my pocket at all times a 3x5 index card for recording great ideas as they came to me...

Unfortunately, a couple of decades later, the card was still blank.

Of course, part of that is because I moved on to using a mini voice recorder, then more recently an iPhone to keep track of my insights...

However, I gave that up, as well... when Siri kept telling me to STFU.

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »


On the positive side, I truly believe I owe a lot of my writing development to the edgy tension between my wife and me about it...

I remember once telling my wife I had a great idea to discuss

She replied that all my ideas grate on her.

So, I tried to tell her maybe I just needed some mental stimulation…

She suggested a Taser.

I told her she wasn’t fooling me, that I knew she actually had a heart of gold...

But she replied, “Not any more. I had to hock it, to pay for groceries.”

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »


Still, I can say I would not have wanted it any other way...  At least, I think not...

Once during a quieter moment, I said to my wife, "You know, the things you say about my writing really aren't funny...

But she replied, “That’s been my line all these years.”

Exasperated, I told her our conversation really wasn’t going anywhere…

She just chuckled derisively and said, “Yeah, just like your writing career.”

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »


Author's Notes:  This post is kind of special for me, as I am using it to kick off a new direction in my writing odyssey.  As a professional writer, editor, university educator, and speaker, with more than 1,000 print and digital publications, I've recently launched an online program for enhancing the impact of your expository writing: Learn to Engage — With Confidence. My mission is to help writers and would-be writers improve the clarity of their thought and writing, master the logic of discussion, and strengthen their ability to deal confidently with criticism and disagreement. For more information, you can go to or email  

If you'd like to sample more of what I've written, here are three of my more popular posts.

"Three Points of Advice to My Teenage Daughter"

"Conversation Isn't Just Waiting Politely to Speak"

"Why Executive Management Doesn't Get Bad News Until It's Too Late to Do Anything About It"

If you'd  like to receive notifications of my writings on a regular basis, click the [FOLLOW] button on my beBee profile.
As a writer-friend of mine says, you can always change your mind later.

Feel free to "like" and "share" this post and my other LinkedIn articles — whether on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. I ask only that you credit me properly as the author, and include a live link to the original work.

About me, Phil Friedman:  With 30 some years background in the marine industry, I've worn numerous hats — as a yacht designer, boatbuilder, marine operations and business manager, marine industry consultant, marine marketing and communications specialist, yachting magazine writer and editor, yacht surveyor, and marine industry educator. I am also trained and experienced in interest-based negotiation and mediation. In a previous life, I taught logic and philosophy at university.

Text Copyright © 2016 by Phil Friedman — All Rights Reserved
 Images Credits:  the Author, Stuart Miles @, and Google Images

Conversations With My Wife About My WritingLETRAS nn es ® ® »



Phil Friedman

7 years ago #30

You know, Paul, I can identify the "writers" out there -- at least the male, married ones, and sometimes the female married ones -- by how strongly they identify with this Catskills-style comedy piece. I like to think that it captures some of our struggle to be "understood". Good luck with that, buddy. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment. And cheers!

Paul Walters

7 years ago #29

Phil Friedman you know it almost feels like we are married to the same woman !

Kevin Pashuk

7 years ago #28

It's still funny the second time through... As it has been said in the book of cowboy wisdom "If ever you get to thinking too highly of yerself... try ordering someone else's dog around." I would add "or ask your wife to critique your writing."

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #27

Thank you. Mohammed,, for the kind words. This is humor that kills cats.

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #26

Thanks for saying so, Fatima. Cheers

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #25

Thank you Debasisdh, for readin and commenting. #30

Mohammed Abdul Jawad

7 years ago #24

Ah, Phil Friedman With this typical, satirical rub between you and your wife, presumably every time your pen gains momentum to write something, may be you had to feel a pinch of fear from your wife's witty words. Aha...good that you innocently say to her and she says all in brevity. That's salty humor. Enjoy it! :)

🐝 Fatima G. Williams

7 years ago #23

Ahhh I remember this one even without reading this again. What a laugh I had. 😂😂😂. Happy evening to you guys.

🐝 Fatima G. Williams

7 years ago #22

Ahhh I remember this one even without reading this again. What a laugh I had. Your buzzes do NOT grate on us so We are good Phil 😂😂😂. Happy evening to you guys.

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #21

At least one, for sure ...

Ian Weinberg

7 years ago #20

Great stuff! Good on you Phil Friedman

Gert Scholtz

7 years ago #19

Phil Friedman Shared for a good laugh!

Mamen 🐝 Delgado

7 years ago #18

Oh my... Meanwhile I was reading your post, my 6 years old daughter came to me and asked "Mommy, why are you laughing so much?" Great post Phil Friedman, hope you do not suffer very much with the sarcasm of your wife but must be recognized she has a very intelligent humor. Love your Comedy Club!

Jim Murray

7 years ago #17

Nice Piece...My wife only reads the stuff I write on Facebook and even then not always. I remember when I gave here my first screen play to read...she was like 'This is more than a hundred pages'. That was the end of that.

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #16

@ Kevin Pashuk - I like this piece a lot. Because it resonates, I think, with an undertone of truth. But I am only the straight man in the scenario. Cheers!

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #15

Thank you , for sharing, and for reading and commenting. Pleased that you felt the good humor in this piece. Cheers!

Kevin Pashuk

7 years ago #14

How did I miss this one Phil Friedman? Every good story needs a protagonist, an antagonist, and a conflict. You've got the trifecta. Could be a long running series.

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #13

Randy Keho, you enjoyed it because you and I are from Chicago, where smartass humor is an art form, and stand up comedy is highly respected. Thanks for the kind words. And you are right, I am must a straight man. Cheers!

Randy Keho

7 years ago #12

Sounds like you wife is the comedian Phil Friedman You're just Dean Martin. Can you sing? I won't ask if you can drink. Thoroughly enjoyed the chuckles.

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #11

Gert Scholtz, thanks for taking the time to say so. Cheers!

Phil Friedman

7 years ago #10

Thank you Fatima Williams, for taking the time to read and comment. I am especially pleased that it brought some humor into your life. For on social media, we all tend to be too serious, or rather self-serious at times. Cheers!

Gert Scholtz

7 years ago #9

Phil Friedman Entertaining and enjoyable post Phil!

🐝 Fatima G. Williams

7 years ago #8

Oh How I loved reading this buzz Phil Friedman It really had me laughing out loud and lifted my spirits up. It kinda makes me justify why we love to do; what we love to do; no matter what ! #funnyhoney on beBee.

Phil Friedman

8 years ago #7

Glad you enjoyed this one, @John White. Cheers!

John White, MBA

8 years ago #6

I freakin love this one!

Phil Friedman

8 years ago #5

Thanks Mike Restivo, for reading and commenting. Always a pleasure to hear from you... warped sense of humor and all. :-)

Phil Friedman

8 years ago #4

Thank, Jim Murray, but logically, while not liking it would make you a dork, liking it doesn't mean you're not. Just pointing that out for fun. Thank you for the kind words. Cheers!

Jim Murray

8 years ago #3

Love it, of course. I'd be a dork not to.

Phil Friedman

8 years ago #2

Thanks, Juan Imaz, for reading and letting me know that it brought a chuckle. That is what makes the effort worthwhile. Cheers!

Phil Friedman

8 years ago #1

Thanks, Mike Restivo, for reading and commenting. Cheers!

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