Every work of fiction is based on a truth. There are many things I am learning, whilst I write but the truths that I learn every week are by far the most interesting.
I read aloud my book at the writers group I attend and listen carefully to the other members work. I have never been comfortable speaking in front of a lot of people. However I am comfortable reading my book, it’s part of me now. We all share our souls, some pain and some love. In all of our work even when fictional and funny there is a truth that we share. How powerful the written word is when the writing is honest and we are really listening. It cuts through the mess, can disrobe the barer, it can even disrobe the listener if they are willing.
As well as my book, I read one of my blog pieces out last week and had to read the word petrified. I had practised the short piece at home a loud before hand and it was fine. However as we went around the table and I knew my turn was coming I could feel my stomach tighten. It was my turn and as I started to read my throat got dry and my voice was shaking, I came to the word I did not know until now was a problem, petrified. As I said the word aloud my hands were shaking, I was an eleven year old again, petrified. My throat seized and the anger rose from my stomach, I shook my head and let out an exasperated sigh. I passed the writing to our teacher and he carried on reading it. I knew if I could get past the word the end was sure to get a laugh and it did but just not from me.
It is amazing how one word can hold onto a memory as if you are still there, but we are not still anywhere. We can only be in this moment, yes we can remember and yes we can project into the future but we can only ever be right here, right now. I have practised that word over and over in front of the mirror and it now has no hold over me, I wonder if everyone has one word they find hard to say aloud? If they are even aware of it?
At the end of our road is a beach that is supposedly a nudist beach. I have only ever seen people walking their dogs or playing with their children, it is hard to think that these people in a couple of months when the sun is hot will be naked. However if they are, good for them. I can understand the liberation of being unclothed. That is their truth, however lumpy or bumpy, wobbly or knobbly. How beautiful to let it all hang out and be comfortable with every inch of your skin, every inch of your being. I’m not sure I am ready to brave the nudist beach, however I will keep writing my truths and baring my soul, if not my skin just yet!
My book Sharks & Lovers is available to download here: