Personal Blog: on writing/dealing with wounds

“In this dark and wounding society, writing can give you the pleasures of the woodpecker, of hollowing out a hole in a tree where you can build your nest and say, ‘This is my niche, this is where I live now, this is where I belong.’  And the niche may be small and dark, but at last you will finally know what you are doing.  After thirty years or more of floundering around and screwing up, you will finally know, and when you get serious you will be dealing with the one thing you’ve been avoiding all along––your wounds.”

–– Anne Lamott

I have never been apologetic for my wounds in my writing. Because I am a beginner, much of my writing has walked the line of being too autobiographical, and I can say I am a culprit of sentimentality. I have realized now I am not ashamed for the gross sentimentality in my writing. It is bad writing to be sure, and though it can be refined with time and much revision, I forgive it because they were trips, falls, and little scrapes on the knees that one must make when she begins to hold a pen. Sentimentality is an inevitable consequence of being who I am, and I will never apologize for being true to my self. That is the least thing I can say about my writing, that it has been, at least, very honest, and honest to the point that it could show me, years later, what exactly I have been hiding from myself. For example, at the time when I was writing a particular short story, the things I had a hard time seeing were the things that came out unapologetically, and they looked at me with an acute expression like my grandmother’s look, when she sees that I am not wearing heels and points her very thin finger at me, shaking her head (she thinks I am too short to not wear heels on a daily basis). And I learn from it. It’s strange to learn from things that you have written, but that is one of the great things about the process of writing. You see your growing pains, and it’s concrete, tangible, real. You know have moved from point A to point B, and it’s proof you’re getting where you want to go. I know I have a lot to learn but, finally, I am happy where I am and where I am going in life.

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