Most things we write come out of a moment of enthusiasm
I have just started my second year at university, yay me, and one of my topics is life writing. We had our first class yesterday and discussed issues that come up in life writing, like how fallible memory can be, and how our perceptions change so much as we grow older that it can be impossible to still see the views we held as a 14 year old, or whatever other age that isn’t now.
We also talked about the role of honesty in life writing. For me, when I pick up a book that is labelled as a biography, autobiography, memoir, etc., I make the assumption that what the author has written is mostly true. these events did happen like this in this order and that person did say that then. But really, what do I know? How do I know? In response, I say Why does it matter? Someone claiming to have done some amazing thing is a liar and will probably soon be called out on it. If too much fiction is employed then the author should suck it up and put it in the fiction section of the bookstore and library. That said, all self written stories employ devices used by writers who seek to entertain. Metaphors, colourful language, etc etc.
We have to write a 1000 word story, a piece of life writing of our own. And while I have ten thousand million scraps of memory that I could draw inspiration from, a thousand words is a minuscule number to try and contain any one scrap. I wonder how much of memory we make up. We walk to the shops, do we really remember how the pavement felt beneath our feet, or do we simply make a calculated guess, based on the hundreds of other times we’ve walked and registered the small, inconsequential detail?
I walked to the shops today. I was wearing my high heels, the brown boots that are oh so comfy and add an extra 8cm to my height. The accentuate my long legs and I feel as though I might be someone worth noticing for once. I even sneak vain glances as myself in the polished stone walls and darkened windows, to validate my own imagination. I had to navigate the gaps in the pavers and other small gaps that are simply designed to snare stiletto points of the unaware, all the while standing tall, head up, look confident… I could feel the pads of my feet starting to get tender from the constant pressure, maybe I would get a blister, maybe not. Probably not.
What am I writing this for? Bleh. The End.