Resistance is Infallible
Rule of thumb: The more call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.
The War of Art
- Some of my neighbors, a covey of California Quail.
This morning I tossed out the last cup of birdseed from a 45-pound bag I purchased back in November. Quail are timid creatures and can run or fly only short distances, but they are very fast, so it has been difficult getting a decent photo of them. My modest digital camera does not do stop-action. I was desperate. I wasn’t going through all that birdseed and not capture something useable.
The question is, why did it take getting to the point of desperation?
This is a segue into why have I only written five pages of a memoir so far this new year.
I paid good money to have my “novel” professionally edited only to be told that as a novel the work was sorely lacking plot and tension. “However,” she said, “as a memoir it needs very few changes.” Not what I wanted to hear. That was December 30, 2010. So I have put it in the drawer and am now going to write the memoir I have been avoiding for thirty-odd years. Actually I have written it twice in the intervening years, but never as a memoir.
Memoir writers have always been my favorite authors. It takes incredible courage to “tell all.” Anne Lamott and Steven King casually included substance abuse in their hugely popular books on writing. Lamott’s Bird by Bird is a classic. It’s difficult to imagine such a successful and happily married author as Steven King, swilling back mouthwash for the alcohol content, as he admits to in Steven King on Writing. Literary agent Betsy Lerner told her story head-on in Food and Loathing. Most recently I read The Truth Book by Joy Castro which is subtitled Escaping a Childhood of Abuse Among Jehovah’s Witnesses. I followed this with Just Kids by Patti Smith, a remarkably even-keeled and beautifully written memoir about her friendship with controversial artist Robert Mapplethorpe. That Smith was also raised as a Jehovah’s Witness, which she never mentions in the memoir, I believe, explains a great deal about how she experienced her world.
For the lesser known, there is a discussion thread on Amazon titled, “Have You Written a Memoir?” which has 2,361 responses at this point in time. Fascinating stuff.
Are you resisting writing your story, your memoir; or resisting getting it published?