I mentioned yesterday about the hesitancy I was feeling regarding my assignment from Hollis Gillespie's Shocking Real Life Writing Seminar. A few days before the seminar I was wondering if this is really the class for me because it is in fact a memoir class. And see, I don't really want people to know all my shit. Which some of you may find ironic considering the fact that I have a blog where I share every detail of my life. But that's just the thing. I don't share every detail of my life, something I pondered about here not that long ago. Ultimately I realized that I don't want to share some of the most private aspects of my life on this blog. Heck, I share those details with very few people in real life. I'm just a private person.
But I went because I like Hollis' writing and her class has proven to be very successful in getting people published. She works with everybody in the class to come up with an awesome idea, a kickass, attention-grabbing title and then she matches you with agents who are specifically looking for your type of material.
Before the class we had to provide her with a little background on ourselves and a couple of book ideas that we had. One of mine was about the suicide of my friend, Fred. I put that down because it is one of the most impactful things that has happened in my life, but I wasn't sure it was the story I really want to write.
But everybody in the class seemed to think that it is the story I need to write. I, however, have a lot of reservations about it. For one thing, if I tell the story completely honestly, there is a chance that some people will be hurt by it -- Fred's family, in particular his wife and young sons. And I'm just not sure that my need to tell this story is worth that.
We talked a lot in class about letting go of fear and how we have to tell our story as WE saw it and not worry necessarily about what the other players in our story think. And I think that's okay for most stories that are told. But there's something about the death of someone by suicide that requires me to concern myself with how my story will affect the other people involved, especially since a couple of those people are children.
So, I'm probably not going to write that story. Everybody kept saying "write it like no one's going to see it" but frankly I'm not sure I see the value in that. I've written it in my head a thousand times.
I am, however, working on a couple of other ideas. I've got some stories percolating in there. We'll just see what bubbles up to the top.
5 years ago