A little over ten years ago, small print publication began where I used to live. The editor was looking for content writers, and I decided to take a gamble and submit an essay. It was about head lice and the parasitic fondness for my two daughters’ long blond locks. That story, as badly written as it was, was the birth of my “well paid” writing career. I was hooked on writing. I have written consistently ever since, for about the same amount of financial gain.
I’ve had some marginal success, mostly when I wrote my Miss Mom Column at the original Spartanburg Spark. But it was there that I feel that I grew as a writer and I began to experiment with genres other then opinion pieces, anecdotal stories, and informative journalistic articles. I began to dabble in poetry and fiction as well. Still where I was the most comfortable was in the stories of my life.
So why do I write in my preferred genre? I have long found writing to be therapeutic, and a hell of a lot cheaper then a licensed therapist. I discovered the satirical blackness of my humor when stressed, yet I still could temper it when I wrote a funny story about an event in my life. I have attempted to dig down into my soul and just pour out what is there, twice. I found the experiences exhausting, but yet it helped me recognize what all I had hidden from myself and others emotionally.
Yet it was because of two essays that I wrote for a Creative non-fiction class last year, that I decided that I needed to do something more then the odd short story or poem, and be content with adding content to my blog. More then one person has told me to do a book. The more I’ve thought about it, the more I realized that I had enough material built up over the years to do just that. It is just a daunting task to consider.
I’ve pretty much decided to keep on the same genre where I tend to spend the most creative time. Stories about the lunacy that is my life. Lord knows I have enough material that I don’t have to write anything new, just edit, expand and compile. It’s just picking which ones to use, finding a good theme, and making it work. I just don’ t have a clue where to begin. But then I wonder if I should do something more serious…I don’t know yet. I am still trying to figure out the what, as I ponder the how.
Ok, I do actually, I am just a bit overwhelmed at how to start it, as well as possessing a healthy case of procrastination where it is concerned. The task is to finally organize everything that I have written into some sort of cohesive organizational format. There is a fair amount of purging to do, some serious categorizing, and then there is the continual state of disorder that is my office. Then I can more easily make decisions on what the book will contain.
In the meantime I am asking for a volunteer or two. As I begin this project, I will need someone who can edit better then I can. Trust me I am the world’s worst self editor. I discover all my errors ten seconds AFTER I submit a work somewhere. I will need some help picking and choosing what to use, what to chuck, and what new to consider. I am going to be realistic and try to get this done by the end of the year. I’ve been sitting on this idea for well over a year already and haven’t gone anywhere with it. Part of it is not my fault as a new job, personal life changes and a lack of actual time have made it near impossible to do a lot creatively. The rest is, as I have continued to put this off until next week, the next and the next.
It’s time to start. But first I need to clean off the surface of my desk…again.