When the going gets tough.

Lately writing has been hard.

Everything about it is about as much fun as putting a pinecone up my ass.

I’ve not been feeling well due to general stress, the type of stress that pushes every panic/anxiety button I have except maybe one.

There are certain types of stress I can’t write through. Well I can but not well and not what I need to be writing. Finances, my partners health, making sure the rent is paid. Those things wring me out and leave me only wanting to write shitty angst ridden poetry about the evils of being poor and trying to make art.

With my finances balanced in a precarious manner (as in I get my regular paycheck on Weds. I have a payment from my meager smashwords sales coming, I have a possible bullshit freelance thing that will probably evaporate due to me not wanting to deal with it etc) I sat at the bus stop tonight and pulled out my notepad and pen.

I wrote a sort of half fiction freewrite thing and when it was time to get on the bus I reread what I’d written.

In 15 minutes of scribbling in my usual purple ink I got more raw and real despite my language fancies than I have with most anything else lately.

I let out a couple of things I’ve been sitting on because they really fucking hurt. I’m talking I’ve had one of those oh shit moments, a big epiphany that is an open wound and I don’t know what to do with it.

There are those things I’d like to write about from this point, being a grown up lady about being the kid I was on the inside. I don’t know how to do that and not have it be awful for my family to ever read.

Off and on I’ve written about my inner childhood, not the one I showed my parents and schoolmates but the one in my head. That world was really fucked up.

I was so fucked up.

I’m still fucked up but wow. I had an inkling after sharing what I thought were cute anecdotes about baby Shannon’s Many Neurosis but friends were horrified and cried sometimes and I realized it wasn’t cute it was awful.

Being that i never had a Queer related Coming Out, I feel like these things might qualify with the painful accessories and things.

On the other hand, I don’t want to make my friends cry. I don’t want them to feel hurt for a kid they never knew.

Writing is fucking hard.

So I’ll put that away for now and maybe keep scribbling in that notepad and hold onto it until I’m ready to show and tell.

In other non terrifying writing news I got some work done on a story that was elusive. I know where it ends very clearly but the shit in the middle has been hard. It’s another of my weird love stories. A girl talking about her girl and being dope sick and their sugar daddy.

I was listening to a random old episode of Bookworm and Chuck Palahniuk was the guest. I have mentioned it before but I am a huge lover   really obsessed with hearing authors I like speak. Whether it’s about their books or just talking. One of the things I love about Chuck Palahniuk (I’m a for serious fan I can spell his name right without looking it up) is though he can be relatively soft spoken, there is such a beautiful exuberance in his voice. I loved how he was talking about horror novels and his love of awful things.

Prior to that I listened to an old Jerry Stahl interview and the way he speaks is something else entirely. Because he knows hell (I wish I could remember offhand exactly how he puts it) there is something very amused in his voice. Beyond his habit of self deprecation (I might be projecting here) there’s moments in his interviews where if you’ve been inside hell, you know why he’s chuckling.

I also (seriously I wait about an hour for a bus at night) listened to Cheryl Strayed speak and her voice has the same kind of knowledge in it. Even if I hadn’t read Dear Sugar, or been at all familiar with her work there is that intangible something that tells you she knows what she’s talking about.

I listen to these interviews when I have trouble writing not because I think I will ever have success on their level but because there is something they have that holds me up.

They say things that touch the hard or bleeding places and I sit and realize yes, this is bad and bullshit but I can keep going.

Or they boss me around. Sugar says in my head (now I hear it in her voice) write like a mother fucker.

I think about being 17 and spending my lunch money on stamps and quality envelopes. I remember sitting hunched over trying so hard to write addresses neatly. I remember sneaking and using copy machines for free because I had learned the hard way not to mail my only copy since I had no computer.

I think about yes, yes I am really upset because I haven’t been able to afford to outfit myself in non raggedy summer clothes and that Fall is coming and I need a new coat. I am upset because blablabla.

I remember that what I’m doing matters. That over in my personal blog, every person who takes the time to contact me privately just to tell me I’m a fat bitch makes it a little more worth it. That no, I don’t get paid and writing is a sinking financial ship for me it doesn’t matter.

I do it because it keeps me alive.

I do it because these words are mine and will always be mine. And that matters.


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