Even if the thing I’m working on doesn’t end up having any value as literature, it’s uncovering no end of fertile ground for me. In about an hour of writing over the past three days, I’ve found at least three things that lead me to believe that I may need to return to therapy, plus things are spilling into my straightforward narrative that I didn’t think were related, but clearly are.
And don’t even get me started on all the stuff it’s leading me to examine as a writer. I’ve got process improvements aplenty on the way for this. I wasn’t even rereading, but found myself walking around thinking “too much telling, not enough showing!” “Don’t describe a conversation, here, show the conversation!” “Maybe you could start it there, but you’re going to have to loop back and get x, y, and z in there, if you’re going to do it right.” I’m ordering special notebooks and don’t you worry— I’mma fix this whole thing right up.
So here’s a question for those of you who write under your own names, you brave souls: have you had to wade through backlash of people who’ve (correctly or incorrectly) identified themselves in your writing? Has your writing affected your relationships, or have I listened to Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” a time or two too many?