How Tobias Wolff Saved my…….Mind

09Feb13

Dear readers,

I’ve been having a nervous breakdown.  Not a small one where you gently question your reality and purpose, but the big time flipping kind where tantrums are about to be thrown (or maybe they were, I’ll never tell).

I got my memoir back and had issues with a few chapters.  Structural changes that NEEDED to be made, but my brain was broken (haha) and I couldn’t think my way out of a paper bag.  I sat and stewed for days.  In the process, I tried revising.  NOTE: Only revise when your feeling brilliant.  Otherwise you’ll ruin it.  I started cutting and tearing through my pieces all wild and mad, slicing and dicing and destroying my work.

I forced myself out.  I bought an overpriced, silly coffee.  I went to a bookstore.  I bought “This Boy’s Life.” I didn’t read it per se, but I read the first and last lines of every chapter.  I went through and looked up how he handled time and transitions.  I looked at his storytelling. I held that book in my hand and said, “Damn girl.  Quit being a baby and push harder.”

And that’s what I’ve been doing.  Pushing.  Thanks Mr. Wolff for the reminder.

Love,

L

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6 Responses to “How Tobias Wolff Saved my…….Mind”

  1. You are doing incredible work. Beating yourself up is just a natural part of the process…but you must stop now. Build yourself back up–no matter how many silly coffees it takes 🙂

    It’s all about reading other writers, isn’t it? One’s you really click with?

    You got this!

  2. 5 MBC

    Gotta love being bipolar. Makes you brilliant but exacts a toll. Structure can be edited, your talent though is a gift. A few more shots of espresso and you’ll be right as rain!

  3. ‘Right as rain.’ Didn’t the lady in the movie the Matrix say that?
    I have to go watch it now. I am not a writer Lennon…all I can say is reading your writing is addictive. I’m finally caught up I think.


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