So I’m saying goodbye to fiction and poetry and embarking onto a journey into life writing. I’m worrying a little about this topic for a number of reasons:
- Why would anyone find my life interesting? I’ve never done anything so different or so exciting it merits writing about!
- How honest can I really be if I want my friends and family to speak to me ever again?
- How do I even come up with an idea of what to write about?
- How can I avoid unturfing sensitive issues?
- I’m 20! How much of a life have I even had?
- What if people judge me for what I reveal about my life?
I think writing down my fears has helped calm me down a little bit. And there are things I’ve been looking forward to about life writing, such as:
- I can use my own voice! I know this sounds like a silly one, but I find it so much more freeing writing from my own point of view; when I’m writing from the perspective of an invented character I’m never sure if I’m being entirely consistent…
- I won’t have to do any in-depth character creation- my characters already exist!
- I will be able to use my friends and family as a resource. Their memories will help to add more depth to whatever story I decide to tell. Also having their help will stop me from feeling like I’m swimming against the tide by myself.
- It could be cathartic writing about my past experiences, especially if they were particularly difficult events. This could be my opportunity to flush out my negative baggage.
- It’s something I am capable of doing; I’ve kept a diary for years and I do (kind of!) keep a blog, they’re both forms of life writing, right?
I think that as long as I focus on those positive thoughts about life writing, I might be able to keep my cool! My aim is to prevent the usual panic, and I think that this time I might have just done that… I’ll keep you posted!