06 November 2009

NaNoWriMo, day 6, 8400 words

I confess, when I think of my current writing group, one voice tends to chime out over the top of the others. When her voice said one day, "It's all good material!" after I had checked in about an impossible situation that I had drawn myself into, I felt a permission to use my own raw material that I hadn't even noticed I hadn't given myself yet. So that little nugget of commentary and advice turned out to be a gift, for which I am grateful especially because it has allowed me to unbarricade a particularly dark and awful corner and allowed me to face up to some facts I'd been avoiding for a while. More material, yippee! [with only the merest hint of sarcasm]

And Nanowrimo, the National Novel Writing Month, bless its pointy little head, is giving me a fun place to put all this. I even have some totems, some people I think of sometimes while writing. There's my mother and oldest sister, and now there are these wonderful constellations and planets shining in my sky: my writing groups, current and past, and Angela Shelton, who is a joyful example of someone standing up for herself and other victims of abuse. She too is taking some long looks at how we make abusers in our culture. There is the author of The Sociopath Next Door, Martha Stout, Ph.D., who gave me another key to a dark room whose door I can now fling wide open. I am loving working all of this memoir and information into the fabric of this story of a woman getting out from under an ugly, sad situation with an abuser at its core, who must begin the task of making good choices for herself. I confess I feel a little like I'm attempting to climb up there too by telling this story, which I hope can become another bright glow in a constellation that will illuminate more than just my path.

Exercise: Fill in the blanks: "_____s will be _____s!"

What phrase did you pick? One of my novel's themes is the expectations we project onto people because of how we identify them, how we sort each other into categories. Also interesting to me is how often we are right about the character of the person, but wrong about the specific details.

Plus it's a road story.

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