I have a website. Yes, I do. It hasn’t had an update for….well, since December 2014.
I’m paying for the domain and the hosting and everything, and squandering that opportunity.
There’s a reason.
I am terrified of the thing I need to write on my site.
I’ve been feeling for months—years, even—that I need to address a particular topic in my writing. I know that there are people who will be helped by what I have to say. I know that I can research and present facts and points and bring to light things that will honestly help others.
In doing so, however, I will have to admit things I am not ready to admit.
I’ll have to shed a façade that I don’t know if I’m ready to shed.
There are action steps I will have to complete, and the world will be watching.
Okay, that last part—the “world” won’t be watching. I don’t expect that my site will be popular or even particularly well-read. But my world will be watching. They’re gonna be “checking up” on me, or being concerned, or sympathetic, or worried, or… whatever. That’s not my cuppa.
|I'm not at all interested in this scene|
So, how do I do it? How do I find the courage to write about this thing that has wound itself around my psyche and grips me so tightly that I can’t think to write much of anything else? At the same time, I can’t think of the right words to start writing about it. I imagine that’s the fear, and the desire to do it right. To create something that will truly represent what I want to say.
I don’t want to jump the gun and express things in a way that I later regret.
Someone once told me (and my chapter of ANWA) to “write the one truth.” I keep going back to that.
Do we all have “truths” that we struggle with bringing to light?
How do we delve deep within ourselves, and find those uncomfortable places so we can sit there amongst the shards and stones and pick out the gems of truth that we can then polish and make shine for the world to see?
E.B. White said, ““I admire anybody who has the guts to write anything at all.”
|That's EB White. They guy who said the thing.|
Sigh. Deep breath. We can do this. I can do this.
Here are a few little tips I’ve gleaned from places on the Interwebs. I’ll include links to stuff, too.
*Experience. Our opinions, our stories, etc., come from our experiences. Remember, people want to hear/read STORIES. Experiences resonate. We don’t even necessarily have to analyze and define what those experiences mean—sometimes letting the reader do that for themselves is what will resonate.
*Here’s a good one, from http://leemartinauthor.com/2014/06/close-to-the-bone-writing-family-secrets/ (just for the record, I’m not talking about family secrets in my quandary. Not those kind of secrets, or that kind of family, anyway. But it’s good advice anyway.)
“Once a writer is born into a family,” Czselaw Milosz said, “that family is doomed.” We might as well accept it. A writer is expert at the art of revealing what people suppress or perhaps don’t even know they carry. We cut through the masks that people wear. We get down below the skin to the truth of who people are when they’re alone in the dark. Along the way, we’re going to hurt some feelings, perhaps even risk relationships that matter greatly to us, all for the sake of the art.
What’s a family secret you wouldn’t want known? Tell the story of it. Be ruthless. Tell it all, no matter how ugly it is. Feel what it’s like to write close to the bone. You never have to share this with anyone. It’s your choice. But for the sake of everything that you’ll eventually write, you need to feel what it’s like to say the hard things, to lay oneself open, to be honest and direct. Don’t wait. Do it now.
*I don’t know why I find more tips of this sort related to family secrets/family drama, but here’s another one, from http://www.namw.org/wp-content/uploads/Secrets-Lies-and-Scandals-Issues-with-Truth-and-Family-public.pdf
Give yourself permission to be an artist. Allow yourself to see the world through your own eyes without flinching or doubting yourself. Later, if you change your mind about things you wrote, that is fine. You can change everything until it’s published!
*A whole website of writing tools, with, for example, this article about writing about “sacred” things: https://www.writingclasses.com/toolbox/articles/the-care-and-treatment-of-sacred-things-part-i
So. There are some ideas.
Will I ever find the courage to start this writing series I’ve been stewing about for so long? I don’t know. I hope that I can dredge up the courage to do so.