Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Writing a Memoir

As a School Adjustment Counselor, I write a lot.  Report writing includes daily, monthly, and quarterly reports.  Sometimes I'm required to write behavior reports following weeks of observations and interviews.  Some reports require in-person presentations at education team meetings.  All of these reports require time sensitive deadlines.  I find it pretty easy to finish these tasks on time and get the reports to the proper people.

Why do I bring this up?  Do you see my blog post dates?  Seriously.  Can you imagine the procrastination that occurred over the past months in writing my book?  Really.  I sat at my computer many times to write only to jump up and walk out of the room.  I wrote and rewrote the same chapter, the same eleven pages, for a month before I finally stopped and moved on to another chapter.  I completed thirteen chapters of the book in three months and then couldn't write a decent paragraph.  What was going on?  It was time to visit my Muse.

Last summer I completed a tele-seminar with Lisa Tener, called "How To Bring Your Book To Life."  In the seminar I met my Muse which helped me to tap into my creative spirit.  This time, my Muse taught me that my procrastination served an emotional purpose.  I neared the completion of my book, "100 Happy Moments:  A Daughter's Memoir of Her Mother's Struggle with Cancer."  My mother passed away after a three month battle with cancer.  As I approached the completion of the book, I faced another ending with my mother:  the book.  That realization opened my eyes.  I cried, a lot.  Then, I sat at my computer and started writing and writing.  The next thing I knew, I completed a chapter.  I found myself at my computer the next day writing again.  Four hours later I finished another chapter. I produced five chapters in May and look forward to completing the book in June.

I've learned a lot in this writing process.  I can't compare time sensitive, on-the-job, report writing to non-fiction memoir writing.  In other words, personal emotions can block the writing process along the way and cause me to miss self imposed deadlines.  Thank goodness for my creative Muse!  Taking time to reflect and tap into that creative energy identified and released the emotional block.   Once removed, the writing flowed.  Writing this book has been an amazing journey.  Developing a new friendship on this journey made it wonderful.   Thank you, Lisa, for your guidance, wisdom, and friendship.

1 comment:

  1. I think I really needed to read this today. And I just got an e-mail from a good friend who wants to start up our writing group again...the one that got suspended when my mom died last summer. I can't wait to read your book, Robin.

    Take care