Tuesday, November 30, 2010

On the road

I had an actual idea about writing the other day. Do you all think that I have a novel/longer work of creative non-fiction lurking inside me somewhere? Perhaps I do, perhaps I don't. It didn't come out while I was in Paris, though I think that sojourn had a different purpose—a kind of release, letting go, of all the work and home stuff that was making me unhappy. Of course, I came back to an arguably less happy work place, but I treasure that time when I truly enjoyed my almost complete lack of responsibility, which included letting myself NOT write.

Still, I think about it a lot, what do I want to write? The other day, I had an idea, a decent idea, for a sprawling family memoir. I could write it well since I tell stories about my family all the time. But telling stories is quite different than writing them down for public consumption. Not that the public would necessarily want to consume them…but still. My concern is about telling other people's stories, something I've always avoided on the blog. I tell my side of the story and I leave out details about third parties. Writing my family stories would involve a lot of third party telling. Perhaps I could land somewhere lightly fictionalized?

It was a good feeling, though, getting that idea about how to organize a longer work of fiction/non-fiction. I actually did have a novel idea that I brought to Paris but when I sat down to work on it, I just couldn't. I'd picked a topic that made me sad and I didn't want to spend my time feeling pained and tortured. Though, maybe that's the nature of writing. In fact, it is, at times. But I didn't want to do it and Paris was my time to do as I wanted. Quite satisfying, despite the lack of the production of a novel. I remember Kent pushing me to write…that's funny. Maybe I could go back to the story we talked about. If I could figure out how to approach it, I might have a lot of fun with that. Then again, who has the time?

Today, I am on my way to Denver, or just outside of Denver, to be exact, where I will be stuck in a hotel for 3 days. My next trip is in approximately two weeks to Reno. Consider this the notice to blog friends who live in Reno: I'm coming your way!

Grateful for: ideas.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe you could start writing them non-fiction including things you'd not make public and write it with an eye toward sharing with someone in your family (for me, I'd pick someone distant, like a young niece's long-unborn child). Then you could kind of get it all out there for the sake of posterity, and either redact/revise and/or fictionalize it for public consumption (or more immediate family consumption) if you wanted.

    I just think the writing process might be easiest if you don't worry yet about who might be upset about a particular story, or whether someone might be interested. That's why I like the idea of writing it for an audience that would likely care (b/c of the family connection) but wouldn't read it until many of the stories were quite old and presumably not all the people involved alive or particularly sensitive about things, etc.

    Sorry I'm not phrasing it well, but hopefully you get the idea. Maybe it would be one way to start, maybe not.



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