If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

Check out our February author interviews: 2/7-debut author Keenan Powell (Alaskan lawyer), 2/14-Leslie Wheeler (Rattlesnake Hill), 2/21-bestselling author Krista Davis, who unveils a new series, 2/28-Diane Vallere answers my questions about Pajama Frame. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

Our February Saturday Guest Blogger Schedule: 2/3-Saralyn Richard, 2/10-Kathryn Lane. WWK's Margaret H. Hamilton will blog on 2/17, and Kait Carson on 2/24.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

In addition, our prolific KM has had the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," appears in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: a Fifth Course of Chaos.


Friday, July 10, 2015


                                                           The Perils of Competence

I have long believed that you should use caution in showing your skills even when you enjoy whatever it is that makes you stand out in your particular area.  Once you demonstrate your abilities, you can expect to be asked to apply them over and over again.  As a therapist, I tended to get caseloads full of clients other therapists did not want to work with.    As much as you want to help people, you cannot do it if you neglect yourself.  For example, people with frequent suicidal ideation require a level of attention and care that can drain energy from therapists.  Having more than one or two people with suicidal ideation in a caseload is an invitation to burn out. 

You might think that mental health professionals would be more patient and understanding of people with behaviors that wear on others.  You would, of course, be wrong.  I’ve had clients who had a genius for pissing people off.  Although, there are people who enjoy what is clinically known as “stirring the shit,” dealing with them was largely a matter of recognizing what they were up to and removing the payoff they desired. The very most irritating people acted out of anxiety.  They knew very well that what they did annoyed people.  The harder they tried to relate, the more annoying they became.  Staying empathic was not easy.

If you have skills, people will notice. When that happens you don’t want to convey the impression that what you do is easy.  I did a number of psychological evaluations for a co-worker who was a social worker.  Once he said, “I don’t know if I should thank you or the test.”  I don’t remember my response.  I should have retrieved the testing materials and carried them into his office.  Then I should have said, “You can do the next evaluation.  The instructions come with the tests.”

What is your experience with competence?


James Montgomery Jackson said...

If you are going to fess up to competence, one you need to have or or quickly develop is the ability to say no.

~ Jim

Gloria Alden said...

Warren, like Jim said, you need to have the ability to say no. Unfortunately, I find that difficult to do, but I am getting better at it, but it's still hard to turn people down when they ask for your help. Could it be the first child syndrome where I felt somewhat responsible for my younger siblings?

KM Rockwood said...

This is akin to the saying, "When you need something done quickly and correctly, look for a busy person to do it."

Kara Cerise said...

I've found that being too competent at work usually leads to a promotion accompanied by long hours and lots of stress.