I attended a wonderful talk by Jim Reed yesterday of Reed Bookstore (click here if you are unfamiliar, he is super great) at the Birmingham Public Library as part of their aspiring author series.  He had so many good ideas that he shared on how to write about your own life.  He stressed the importance of each and every one of us to document our own stories, even if we never share it with another soul.  Write something small down every day, even if it’s just sentence.  Write anything that comes to mind, index your life.  Don’t let your head get in the way, and don’t edit as you go.  Keep what you write in a safe place so that you feel comfortable enough to write anything down.  Write for your own joy.  He also said that experienced writers learn to write shorter and shorter, using less words each time.  I’ve heard that several times from people like him, and there is something to it.  I think having a blog is a great way to practice writing short, as no one wants to read a novel online (or at least most people don’t).

My grandmother West, who is 93 years old, has written in her journal since the 1930’s and on top of that has written every single day for the last 30 years or so.  She has books and books documenting her daily life.  I think it is more than a coincidence since that’s what I have taken on myself… not even taking into account her own 30 year streak until yesterday.  I would love to read her journals one day to see just what it is she was moved enough to write down.

I have a diary from when I was a child that I really love to read from time to time, and it is completely hysterical.  I would get so upset at the most arbitrary things, and my dreams were outlandish to say the least (glad to know some thing haven’t changed…).  🙂  At the time those things seemed so very real, whether or not they were realistic.   While I still have big dreams, they are much more likely to come true now due to trial and error.  I am definitely honing in on what brings me the most pleasure and satisfaction.

Oh, my life is changing everyday
In every possible way
And my dreams it’s never quiet as it seems
Never quiet as it seems

I want more, impossible to ignore
Impossible to ignore
And they’ll come true, impossible not to do
Impossible not to do

-Lyrics from Dreams by the Cranberries