Fiction Friday, Memoir and Reflections, TGIF, Writing

Truth Or Fiction: Which One Is Stranger?

About a year ago I wrote the beginning of a story I had wanted to explore for a long time.

Fiction Friday: An Old Woman’s Regret

I called it this because I was attempting to establish Fridays, on my new blog at the time, as the days when I would try writing fiction. This was opposed to Mondays when I thought memoir would be the thing to write.

Well, let’s just say that a lot has changed and this blog has developed and evolved since I wrote that, but I have still not been able to figure something out…

I know there’s a lot of truth in fiction. It can’t be helped. Fiction is all things made up, or is it?

**“This proverbial saying is attributed to, and most certainly coined by, Lord Byron, in the satirical poem Don Juan , 1823:
‘ Tis strange – but true; for truth is always strange;
Stranger than fiction;
if it could be told,
How much would novels gain by the exchange! How differently the world would men behold! How oft would vice and virtue places change! The new world would be nothing to the old, if some Columbus of the moral seas would show mankind their soul’ antipodes.”**

I won’t lie and say that there is no truth in that story I began to write. Anyone who knows me well, specifically family members, they could tell this right away.

The woman in the story is a clear reference to someone in my own life. I got my inspiration from her. Isn’t that where many story ideas start?

Well, it is for me.

As much as I love writing memoir, there is something about fiction that can’t be compared.

As I say on my About Me page on my blog, fiction gives a freedom that memoir does not, but that does not make me feel a whole lot better.

I guess I’ve just never been someone who can come up with totally imaginary worlds and populate them with completely created characters.

My ideas start from somewhere real and true, but this crosses the line that sometimes happens in writing.

This brings out my fears every single time I write something. I hate the thought that someone somewhere might read and be offended, seeing something in my words, real or imagined, that they believe is about them.

I know all those disclaimers on television shows, in movies, and in books that says any resemblance to real persons, places, or events is unintentional.

This is to protect people, but we are talking my own writing here.

I write to help me figure things out, how to put my life in perspective, and to bring clarity where their was only chaos.

This all goes on in my mind most of the time, but it comes out on the page/screen.

I tried, for many years, to not write and to not rock the boat. I hid from any possible rejection or criticism I feared writing might bring me.

this was unbearable and stifling.

Now here I am. I am hardly in any sort of Oprah and “A Million Little Pieces” scenario:

Author Is Kicked Out of Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club

🙂

Do you remember that whole situation?

But I find it a curious thing.

Now here I am again and have been attempting to confront this fear. I shouldn’t feel bad for expressing myself, if my conscience is really clear.

I am proud of what I write and anything that has come of that is done without malice, but I realize I can’t really worry about what others might think.

Yeah, when I figure out how to completely not worry about that, I will let you know here.

I have not written any conjoining parts to the story I began from above.

I would love to tell even a version of that old woman’s story, but am not sure I can do that.

I have experienced things recently, heartbreaking instances of harsh reality, for those I love. I can’t quite do anything, at this time, to hurt them, whether they think so or not.

I think it is an extremely interesting issue. What do you think?

Authors and writers and people who read.

How much of what you write, as far as fiction goes, is completely made up and how much of it comes from your own real life?

It brings back the notion of how truth truly can be stranger than fiction, but both have their place.

Hmmm.

All this talk makes me want to see one of my favourite movies, Stranger Than Fiction, again.

If you have not seen this particular film yet, go and check it out. It’s a will Ferrell classic and one of his best performances…not to mention the ones given by the rest of the cast: Emma Thompson, Dustin Hoffman, and Maggie Gyllenhaal. .

Also, as a fan of literature, I just think it’s a really cool storyline.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

**Referenced in above article:

http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/truth-is-stranger-than-fiction.html

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Kerry's Causes, Poetry, This Day In Literature, Writing

A Legendary Hope

“All great achievements require time.”

Today in literature: Maya Angelou dies at age eighty-six.

everywhere you turn today there has been an outpouring of sadness and praise for a great great female poet, author, and activist. She clearly touched many lives with her words. I have been reading her quotes all day, since this morning when I first heard. The above quote, I chose out of so many, because I see where it got her in life and I find hope and promise for my own.

I am not going to go on too much about her and her life because I honestly don’t know very much about these things. I was never hugely familiar with her story, but it is easy to see what kind of impact she made on the twentieth century, as far as poetry and strong female role models go.

I only knew of her because Oprah spoke about her. I saw her on the show from time to time and I listened to her words and her poems. I learned a little bit about the struggles and the suffering she endured over her lifetime. It is miraculous to see how she didn’t allow any of this to break her, letting her eloquent words speak volumes.

I will leave the obituaries for CNN and The New York Times, but I didn’t want to let this day pass without giving her a mention on Herheadache. I started this blog to speak about all things literary and she certainly deserves to be called one of the great literary figures of the last century.

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story within you.”

Very true Maya. Very true.

***

Today is not just the death of Angelou, but it is known, everywhere as World Multiple Sclerosis Day. It isn’t hard to find someone who suffers from or who knows someone who suffers from this dreadful disease. I am no exception.

I had never before met anyone who could know what it was like on both sides: the sighted and the non-sighted world. I suppose that is one reason we became friends. HE saw a little bit of himself in me and he was able to understand me in a way that most people can not.

Multiple Sclerosis has many possible symptoms and effects the body, robbing sufferers of feeling in their limbs, mobility, and even their sight. I had made a friend who could understand what it was like for me to be blind because MS had, for several long months, taken the sight he had all his life. It created an instant bond between us that will always exist.

Although he did eventually regain his full range of vision, the experience influenced him since then. I know he is grateful for what he has now, when looking back on the loss of independence. HE looks at me and my life in a way, and me him, that teaches the both of us about appreciating what we have.

I only want the best for him and hope for a cure sometime soon, in the hopes that he won’t have to suffer with the debilitating problems others with MS must. He already deals with this disease everyday. Some days and periods of time are worse than others. We need to find a cure for this while he still has the time, before there is no going back for him and others.

World Multiple Sclerosis Day, 2014

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