I had the pleasure of offering a Memoir Workshop yesterday with this beautiful group of souls, at the Kensington, PEI Senior Surfers Group.
Things I’m feeling are: terror, excitement, cautious enthusiasm, and more terror. In today’s marketplace, being a writer means being an entrepreneur. There’s the blogs, there are interview to organize, photos to paw through, and web pages to update. This is the total opposite of sitting in my office, in candlelight, finishing the intimacies of my memoir.
You are where my heart is happy, my next best paragraph, my acceptance letters, and the reason i continue to do what i do.
In the afternoons we heard vivid and poignant lectures by Puerto Rican writers,activists, self-published, well travelled teachers and candles in their small but important circles there, fighting for justice, for identity, for freedom.
Something funny has started happening to me since I’ve begun writing full time. I live completely in my head, extending my week into one long metaphor, my perception jagging in every which direction as I shift the angles for a better view on the page, something more interior, something deepened. I don’t notice where i am in space, that’s too unimportant.
The story is mixed in shades of darkness and stormy seas of confusion and grief, following a path of color and culture as the main character, Mo, finds the freedom to liberate the heavies in a sort of reality check taking stock of what she really has left in this world.
am tuning in to the rhythm of my own creative process. I am learning character from Hemingway and style from Didion, delving into wildness with cheryl strayed and sitting peacefully on the fences of British churchyards with Bill Bryson. I am asking myself the traveller’s questions of Pico Iyer and am suddenly indebted to Flannery O’Connor and Eudora Welty for their courage and bravery to get up every morning and write.
As Prince Edward Island welcomed its first rays of warm summer, ripe red strawberries, and car loads of families and travelers waiting for a glimpse of our famous Anne of Green Gables, I trotted off expectantly to Montpelier Vermont, and to my first Master’s writing residency at Vermont College of Fine Arts.
I know that as a writer, I’m not supposed to obsess about publishing. I’m supposed to put my head down and keep writing, and never to get discouraged when the rejection letters come.