Okay, so, here is a dilemma. I love writing. I want a career writing books, but to accomplish this in the digital age requires a degree of self-revelation that sets my teeth on edge.
Now, don’t get me wrong, writers have always reveled themselves. I was watching a documentary of Joan Didion. She the sort of literary that makes many (me included) drool. A bohemian life in an intellectually rich milieu. Marrying into a literary family and projecting a kind of hip vibe standing in front of her high-end car smoking a cigarette.
While interviewing her, her nephew, Griffin Dunne, director of this puppy, brought up an article. In the introduction, she announces that she and her family had gone to Hawaii in leu of she and her husband divorcing. Intimate information, sure. Personal, you bet, but the article was printed in a magazine. They lived a lot of their marriage making ends meet this way. But, how many weeks, or months, passed between her turning in an article and the magazine’s release? How many revisions? That time lag means that your life could have changed between writing and publication. Instant world always demands the now. You can feel pressured into creating constant content. Take the Hawaii sentence. By the time that article got read, they would either have separated or remained married, but the limbo moment would have passed. And it could exist in the first place because she and her husband never put restrictions on the parts of their life together that they could include in their work. As Nor Ephron used to say, ‘everything is copy.’
However, for that to work, everyone who enters your life agrees to that standard, and in the information, many manage to create successful businesses out of this, but how deep to they go? And what do they really reveal? What, in the age of transparency, does meeting this standard, cost you and do how honest are we.
I have a great set of friends and family. They support my writing, but they do not want to surrender their privacy for it. More, I do not have the right to ask them to give it up, so some of things will get approached sideways. Some will get scrambled into fiction so well that only I know the source. I cannot write the Hawaii sentence, say what you will about what that says about my stance as a writer. I can agonize over it, but I cannot change it.
I figured you deserved to know at the start of this to make your own judgement—you will anyway and that’s the way it goes, right? With that in mind, here we go:
Thank you for showing up. I really want for this to be a journey we take together. I’m approaching the half-century mark, but although my joints feel it, my heart has me in my early 30s. My adult only reinforces this.
I love television, growing up in the 1980s when it mattered. Now I love Netflix, but it offers not too many options, which it does, but too many good options and I get distracted easily. I’s a fairly liberal person. I can’t promise that I won’t slip in an opinion you don’t lie. I can promise that I will avoid politics. Too many sources for that to choose from and while some draw inspiration from the political landscape, it drains me. Still, big events, such as a mass shooting, devastating storm, or something equally horrible happens, post on it might appear on the blog. Writing helps me process feeling and if one hits me hard, I will share it. No one likes feeling alone, and this is my way to reach out. You might not agree, but we are here to support each other, right?
I love writing. I hate it, too. I hate revision, but I love those moments where you read something wonderful and you can’t quite believe you wrote it. I guess what I mean is that I love having written. The job of writing, of putting one word down at a time, and then looking at them to hone it down to the right word, can drive me crazier than anything on earth. Oh well, sanity never suited me well anyway.
I’m in limbo between careers as a librarian and ones as a writer. I haven’t yet settled the question to know how to answer, ‘what do you do for a living?’ Part of this whole blog idea is to explore the answer. The other part is to describe the journey of embracing an artistic life later in life. How does it affect your self-esteem, your wallet, and your relationships.
As for the rest, well, we will discover that together.