Yesterday I took a very brave step. While I have sent pages from my novel to a number of agents, each time shaking as I slipped them into the mail slot, I have not shared my writing with friends or relatives.
Yesterday I emailed the first 100 pages of my memior to trusted relatives and friends. I wanted to know from them if they felt it was ready to share with an agent who showed some interest in my project.
In the past have been reluctant to share my writing. It was away to put feelings in a safe place. Hidden away from prying eyes. My feelings were not respected when I was growing up. I was told not to believe my own senses and experiences, so writing became a way to make them solid and real. Writing for me became so personal that it is difficult to share it with others.
As I was writing the female protagonist for my novel, so many of Rhiannon's thoughts and experiences are my own (with the exception of the great love affair). Even writing this fictional character was cathartic for me. It helped me see the inadequacies of my own life, and helped me move forward toward resolving those issues.
I am finding the composing of this memior to be less healing. I have lived that part of my life. The stories within its pages I have told many times. The conflicts are resolved and the goal has been reached. I think this memior's purpose is to instuct and hopefully inspire. But to do that, others will have to read it.
I took that first step yesterday and I will be doing more of it with my women's writing group. I am a storyteller. So the stories must move from my head to the page. So off to write!