Growing up, I used writing as a coping mechanism. It was how I vented my frustrations and dealt with hurt feelings. Whenever someone made fun of me or called me a name, I could write them into a story and exact my revenge. Or I could at least get it off my chest. This seemed normal to me. I knew other kids who did this as well. I didn’t have a lot of friends growing up, so I often felt that I had no one to turn to but the characters I wrote into existence on a sheet of paper. And they never argued or talked back to me – at least they rarely did.

Now I’m older. Obviously. No one gets younger. I still get made fun of. I still get my feelings hurt. Now more than ever, people make me mad. I could choose, as so many people do, to write it into my sub plot as some deep or subtle satire. Or maybe not so deep or subtle. I knew a fellow student who wrote all of his friends into his serial killer short thriller story. It didn’t seem so subtle. 

So I’ve considered this. My friend list is even shorter than it was while I was growing up and when I do get together with my friends (once in blue moon) it seems like a waste of time to spend it summarizing the incidents that led to my hurt feelings or other personal injury. Plus, even if I took the time to include these transgressions into my plot, it would be a waste of time. The people I would be directing it towards will never read it. So really, in allowing these people to creep into my fantasy world, I’m really only doing myself a disservice.

I think the key, and my long time coming point, is to use these experiences as simply that. Experiences. I could use a similar conflict in a plot point, or use my own emotions to give my characters depth and personality. You can’t live every experience you want to write about. I’ve never fought a dragon, met a wizard, been best friends with a goblin, etc. But I can use my experiences with  the few people I do have contact with to breathe life into the pages I write.

I think I wanted to write about this because, I’m an overly sensitive person. Always have been. I have a tender heart and I let my fear over what people think of me dictate my actions far too often. It’s led to bad relationships and bad friendships. This has been weighing on my mind recently. And it’s interfered with my writing. I wanted to get this off my chest in the hopes that it would ease my mind and allow other creativity to slip through instead of frustration and aggravation.

I’m not the type of person to tell all in a blog or any other social media post. I prefer to keep my personal life personal. This is about as personal as I will get on here. But I needed to spell it out for myself. Hopefully now I can move on and refocus on my more important work. Hannah and Charlie don’t need my internal struggle. They have their own to work out. 

photo credit: Cristian V. via photopin cc