Thursday, January 27, 2011

If this is writing, why is my ass so sore?

So, I decided to take a break from my writing, by writing.  What the heck? 
I've been sitting in my writing chair for so many hours today that my brain is getting foggy and my ass is feeling froggy, so here I am to clear the air.  I need to get present, get grounded. 

I haven't washed my dishes or vaccuumed my floor.  I barely made it into the shower by 3:30pm.  I am writing.  I am writing a memoir and this is exhausting.  Well I think that any writing is exhausting really but sometimes it can be an exhilerating release.  That is how I feel about this but its still exhausting for sure.

What was originally going to be a fictionalized account of the summer I lost my brother -- you know, a coming of age story that included death and suspense -- has turned into a memoir.  This fact has revealed itself to me.  Rob said, "Don't get too fictional."  Then I read Rebecca Walker's Black White and Jewish.  It resonated.  Recently, Eddie referred me to Nick Flynn's Another Bullshit Night in Suck City.  It too resonates.  And, I've absolutely got enough life experience now to truly subscribe to the idea that fact is far stranger than fiction.  I'm sold.  Memoir it is.

So, I'm just writing.  I've got a million words floating in my head that have been waiting to come out.  There is no issue of writer's block.  I just need to get it out, formulate later.

Dione and Lee (1974? Tustin, CA)

This memoir corresponds with some personal therapy I'm putting myself through.  That and the organizing and cleaning out of a lot of old heirloom boxes of stuff that include letters I wrote from about age 10-18.  Perfect! 

Dione and Dancing Snow Bear (1982 Crooks, SD)

This story has been brewing since junior high school when I would pass notes back and forth with my best friend, Staci Ramstad.  At that young age, I secretly dreamed that someday the story could be told but never believed that anyone would care about a midwestern farm girl's life journey.  I spent a great many daydreaming moments during class to now believe.  And, after pursuing the wonderful experience of editing my friend Monique Antoinette's memoir Grateful for Grief: Seasons of Transformation, the truth became explicitly clear.  This is a story that needs to be told.  A singular perspective explicated with the hope that someone out there will benefit from my story.

Lee visiting Mom (1982 Santa Ana, CA)

Dione visiting Mom (1982 Santa Ana, CA)

What I do know is that the dis-ease of this journey should help to staighten out some things inside of me that have been unsettled for most of my life.  And, with that, I hope to be able to move on.  Yep, move on.

Thank you for listening.


  1. Excellent. Writing has always seemed to be your therapy, starting in grade school. Your letters had many layers. Write On!!

  2. Hey D, I love that picture of you two as little ones. I can't wait to see this unfold. Write on sister, write on! Love Nic

  3. What a wonderful first morning read this is. I really appreciate the picture story. Seeing you from that time period leaves a huge imprint, thank you.

    I remember being nervous about asking you to edit my book because of its sensitive nature and what we share in common. I don't know if I would have been able to pull that one off. You really are a magnificent human being. Knowing that you are on your way to telling your important story from a sibling point of view sends me peace. Watching my woman-child deal with her loss still pricks me.

    I speak on behalf of her and many others like you....
    Get going and let it rip!
    Monique Antoinette~

  4. I just love who you are... what you create is brilliant. anything I can do to support you, I'm in. PS - there must be a bit of pain inside everyone that gets "touched" when reading a memoir of another. Can't wait for a great published memoir by you and a good cry by me. xoxo