Writing through Life: An IWSG Post

Good day, my writing friends.

Fall is in the air. Can you feel it? Can you smell it? Can you hear it? Where I live, it might not feel like it for a little while, but you can definitely smell it. The scents of pumpkin spice, apple cider, cinnamon. And you can definitely hear it with the shouts of football fans throughout Georgia and the Southeast. Recently, I was shocked, but not really, at how young kids can play football. It’s like a three-day weekend every weekend.

But enough about Fall and football. It’s the first Wednesday. It’s IWSG time. The time when writers all over share their writing stories to the masses. Thanks to the “Ninja Captain,” Alex Cavanaugh and this month’s co-hosts: Dolorah @ Book Lover, Christopher D. Votey, Tanya Miranda, and Chemist Ken.

This month, I’m answering this month’s question.

How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?

As writers, we have many sources of inspiration. I believe the most intriguing and fascinating comes from our lives; the experiences and events that mold us into the people we are. It’s said our stories have a tinge of truth. When we write, we show a reflection of our lives to our audience in a creative manner.

I use major life events in my stories. I don’t believe I have many, but they’re there. And I use them as inspiration in my stories. I use my characters as a way to tell my stories; to share what it’s like to be me. I’m working on a story right now where I’m sharing my experience in my teenage years; about how I felt like the outsider throughout high school, even when I had a lively circle of friends. I treat this story as creative nonfiction. Now there will be some exaggeration, but there is a purpose.

Writing can serve many purposes. Many writers believe it can be cathartic. And using life events is a way to express and release whatever emotions we’re feeling about an influential event, whether it be joyous or traumatic.

I relate to this feeling all too well. I may not have events with overwhelming impact. Events that are construed as mundane and a part of daily life. But I have a myriad of emotions surrounding those events. Emotions surrounding my family and the interactions I have with them.

I wrote stories expressing some repressed emotions about certain family members. After writing and reading them, I felt like weights being lifted off my shoulders. I experienced a release different from just talking with peers or therapists. I felt a freedom and gained a perspective that comes from seeing what I wrote and taking a moment to think about how it made me feel.

I believe when we write, we turn a page to our audience that is a page about our lives. I use events as inspiration for my stories. And in writing them, that allows me to release the emotions associated with them, whether they be positive or negative.

What about you? Do you use life events in your stories? Has it helped you through whatever it is you had or are experiencing?

Let me know in the comments. And if you want to know more about the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, click on the link.

Until next time, take care and keep writing.

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5 thoughts on “Writing through Life: An IWSG Post

  1. I don’t usually drop my own real life experiences into my stories, but my life experiences do get in there wearing clever science fiction-y disguises. And in a way, it’s a bit of a consolation to me: when things go wrong in life, at least I’ll become a better writer as a result.

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  2. I think no matter what you do, pieces of your personal truth translate to the page. For me, they are abundant and many. I think they give my writing substance. The human experiences is pretty universal, no matter how much it’s hidden in layers of fiction.

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  3. I’ve used some life experiences in my stories, and especially the rampant emotions at the time. But it is usually a spontaneous thing when a character is going through something, and I have that “ah ha” moment. When my real life is too messy though, I don’t write. I am too prone to living in the fantasy and not dealing with the real issues on my own. Its good that you can work things out with the writing. Writers exaggerate? Truly? LOL.

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