Welcome back this week. Make sure to check out Carrie Elks after reading the post. I know the participating authors this week are going to have some awesome blog posts.
This week's topic comes from Tracey Gee and it is deep stuff. I almost backed out because it is so terrifying, but I didn't.
So Tracey's topic is: As we all know, authors put real people and situations into their books. Let's look at the times we've pushed through the pain by putting bad experiences or relationships into our works whether for therapy, or just as a way to close the door.
I think this post is difficult only because it really makes one examine their life and not necessarily the good parts, but the bad ones. The days that were filled with sorrow or worry or hurting.
Writing is an expression of the author. It can be fluff or surface writing - something that doesn't really mean much like a cute story or a fun poem. There's nothing wrong with this type of writing and as I examined the question posed I thought that's also a way for an author to work through an emotional trauma - by avoiding it in this way. (Or it's also just plain fun. I mean I wouldn't be doing this if I didn't find it enjoyable.)
Sometimes writing is painful. Other times writing is cathartic and healing.
I'm not sure if others who don't write on a frequent basis or at all can understand the need to get out emotions down on the page or how writing about it can heal.
I don't know either. I just know it does.
So, how have I pushed through the pain in my life with my sword called a pen or keyboard?
I think the first time I realized the power of writing and what it could do was during a college freshman english writing assignment. I'm not really sure the exact topic of the paper we were to write. It had to be about someone in our lives written in a personal essay. I chose to write about my brother. He built me a bike from scraps and taught me to ride it. He had died in a car accident about a month before his seventeenth birthday. I was about two months away from my seventh birthday. The images and memories I had of my brother at the time of the college paper were bittersweet. I hadn't realized until writing about him how much I missed him all those years or how cheated I felt for getting less than seven to spend with him. I think until that moment in college where I forced myself to face the agony of my loss I didn't have a concept of what love he gave to me - my big brother. The agony was too much for a six year old to handle, but maybe I could face it at nineteen? I'm not sure.
Years later, I also turned to writing to work though fertility issues when my husband and I tried for five long years to have a child. It doesn't matter what the doctors say or the advances in medical science, when you can't get pregnant when you want to (especially after years of preventing pregnancy) there are emotions that cannot be explained or expressed in a rational form. This all came out in my fiction writing. Sandra's longing in Circle of Lies for a child was a result of our struggle. When it finally happened for me - she also experienced the same joy I did. At first I thought to have Sandra become upset and worried that she was pregnant because of the plot of the story, but I couldn't. I couldn't make her sad about it. She was bursting with happiness (me too)!
When my baby came early I couldn't write about my fears and terrors. It was too raw, too overwhelming. After my almost two week hospital stay before his birthday, after 66 days in the NICU, we got to bring him home. This was an entirely different terror mixed with unspeakable joy and excitement.
I don't write a lot about those early days in the hospital or the few months after. My boy is 21 months old and healthy and happy. Maybe a future character will help me look back on that time with different eyes. Right now I'm okay with that blank page in that regard. I'm filling in Sandra's story with the exhilarating experience of becoming a mother. It's been a dream of hers you know.
Thanks for reading this week. I'm curious what author, Betty Bolte, has posted to the blog hop today. See ya soon.