Why do I write short memoir pieces and publish them on FB and in my blog?
* I like the spontaneity. An idea comes to me. Sometimes it happens suddenly. Sometimes, two or three ideas roll around in my mind for a few days, then come together and I’m ready. I write, I edit, I post. It’s all done in less than an hour.
* Related to the above is, there are no gatekeepers. In most areas of publishing, I tend to approve of gatekeepers. They ensure quality control – even if we don’t always approve of their choices and even if the quality is sometimes shocking. They have both eyes on the market because that’s what it’s all about. But gatekeepers also mean anxiety for me – as with many writers. There’s that long period of waiting to see if your book/essay/article/poem/short story is chosen. Before you get to that point, you work your bones to fiddlesticks trying to make every word earn its keep. You try to think of the ideal opening paragraph, the one that grabs the reader by the throat and flings them willy nilly down the chute into wonderland. On FB and in my blog, I don’t have to worry about any of that. I begin with a declarative sentence or two, dull and informative. I go straight to my story set-up and I’m off. I’m not competing with anyone. I don’t worry that my work won’t be chosen. That frees me to enjoy the writing of the piece.
* Practice. I’ve been writing for years and years. But even a veteran needs to practise.
* If I didn’t post short memoirs, I’d have nothing to say.
* I left my family a long, long time ago in order to have a good life, one where I could be happy and have friends. But in a way, I have never left. Writing about my mother, my father and my brothers is a way of staying with them without hurting myself. They will never know that I’m still with them. They don’t need to know. I know – and that’s enough.