Today’s post is a little different because I want to share a few thoughts with any writers out there or anyone that God is calling to write a book about your personal story. (Hoping you can relate while reading this post lol). About four months ago, I self published my first poetry book, in which I shared pieces of my journey. Honestly, I never expected to write about any part of my life but wanted to stick with just writing fiction. At first, I felt uneasy about sharing my issues with the world because I was afraid of what people may think or say after reading it. Behind that uneasiness, my fear conflicted with the other side of me that’s committed to being a hundred percent authentic in her writing. It takes courage to put yourself out there and not everyone risk their reputation or feelings to become open about their issues/life. Usually I’m the type of person that internalized a lot of things until someone push the wrong button. The funny thing is that I didn’t have the courage to speak my truth in person but had the nerve to spill it to the world. (God has such a great sense of humor ;)….) Not only did I spill my guts out but came face to face with “me”.
Sometimes people write for fun or express true feelings but others use it for therapy. It’s easy to write words on paper without anyone hearing a word and guess that’s why some people keep diaries. So what’s my dilemma? Pain has a voice. If you don’t vocally express it, trust me the pen will. When I read my book, I saw the depressed and angry girl but also saw her new beginning. Sometimes I go back and read some of my poems to encourage myself. It’s amazing how my dysfunction had so much to say. It’s hard not to feel the words you write unless you made yourself numb to pain. Even then, I believe God can use writing to unlock intimate parts of you so you can confront the loneliness, pain, hurt, rejection, etc. and embrace freedom from it.
This weekend, I’m FINALLY finishing up my short story, Parris’s Hope, which is about a girl running away from her sexual, abusive past. If you like me, you instantly become emotionally attached as soon as your fingers hit the keyboard or/and the pen press on the paper. We want to identify with our characters, paint a very accurate picture of different experiences for our readers, and try to keep from having a nervous breakdown all at the same time…(just joking). Seriously I had to walk away from laptop at one point when I was working this. Although I never went through it, those very words I was writing were trying to speak to me and I had to take a breather. Painful experiences are real. Although that short story was fictional but the person reading it is not.
Writing has a way of making a connection. It is like a mirror of your life that you can’t step away from. In order to overcome something, we have to confront it. Yes, God used my poetry to speak directly to me to stop living in the past and move forward. Yes, slowly I’m taking a step forward because facing myself is hard. When you have to write about those same experiences, you start to realize you can’t run anymore. But there’s a good side to this dilemma….There is peace in release. When you release those horrible feelings and crazy past through that pen, you will soon feel that peace and assurance of letting it go. Of course, this may not be your case. You may be perfectly fine with your crazy story but still afraid to share it. Writers are more than fancy wordsmiths but they become listeners, counselors, that shoulder to lean on, and yes prayer warriors. You are not the only person effected by your story. Think about that little girl down the street that need to hear that she can overcome rape and abuse. Or what about that teenage boy that thinks that real men are baby makers and thugs. If you tell your story, you can help someone else confront their pain.
In the end, let me leave you with these encouraging words.
WRITE YOUR STORY. A testimony is meant to be heard not kept a secret. I do agree that we can’t reveal every detail in our lives to the public but follow the Holy Spirit’s leading on that. As you write your story, you and others will heal from it. Make a schedule, grab some coffee, and start putting some words to that bestseller!
GIVE A VOICE TO SILENT ISSUES. We have this unique job as writers to give voices to the voiceless. Sometimes it can be intimidating to write about touchy subjects but don’t let it scare you. If you have to walk away from your pen in order to process the tragedy you just wrote about, then do it. Take a walk or a fifteen minute break but don’t quit. Remember we are trying to make a change in this world and its starts with our voice.
PREPARE TO COME FACE TO FACE WITH NIGHTMARES, GIANTS, BONES IN THE CLOSET, GOOD & BAD TIMES….(Hey we’re not punks but champions in disguise ;)) I never said that writing a book about your personal experiences will be easy but it’s rewarding. It gives you a chance to look at your issues from a different angle and challenge you to take the necessary steps to become heal and/or remain whole. Also it’s a great feeling to chronicle how far you came in life and that should be something to smile about.
Enjoy your night, peeps!! Until next time, let your pen flow.
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