Brushing up against the edges

As I write The Love Essays about my year of loving fearlessly, I find myself, time and time again, brushing up against the edges of what I’m willing to reveal. (And by brushing up against, I mean crashing into.)

I hadn’t originally worried about that. I thought I was writing a sort of guide, a “here are the lessons I learned” summary, in which I would expand on the ideas I’d expressed already in blog posts. But as soon as I started doing the actual writing, I knew it couldn’t be a guide for two reasons.

First, I’m no guru. Learning how to be fearless in love was and is an ongoing process. There are times when I truly do amaze myself with my willingness to be vulnerable and present and open and brave, but most of the time, I’m just stumbling along the path like everyone else , determined to stay the course, determined not to retreat. The truth is, I spend an awful lot of time trying to find my way back after I’ve wandered spectacularly off course.

Second, the real shit, the most important things I’ve learned, happened behind the scenes of the love project. The project first nudged, then flung, me into new territory, and that’s where the real learning happened; where the most necessary, elemental shifts in my heart and life took place. As soon as I started writing the essays, I knew that if I wanted to talk about fearless love honestly, I had to go there, ready or not.

*****

There is a big, ongoing discussion in the literary world about truth in nonfiction, and it fascinates me. I’m not really talking about the Mike Daisey “is it reporting or is it theater” question, though that is interesting to me too. I’m talking about the more personal concerns of memoir, the kind of stuff that Sari Botton gets at in her regular Rumpus column, “Conversations With Writers Braver Than Me.”

She talks to literary nonfiction writers about truth, boundaries, the dangers of writing about real people, the vulnerability and fear inherent to writing yourself faithfully onto the page. I love the honesty in these interviews, from both Sari (who often crouches her questions within the context of her own difficulties) and the authors she talks to.

In her interview with Stephen Elliot (Rumpus founder and author of The Adderall Diaries), Stephen talks about how very different two versions of the same story might sound. He says both versions can be true because “true” is such a liquid thing.

In our most personal stories, which so often intersect wildly with other people’s personal stories, I think that may be right. And unnerving.

In her Powells Books blog post, “The Thinnest Possible Screen,” Cheryl Strayed writes:

The beautiful thing about memoir is also the thing that makes it the most appalling: It’s actually you on the page. And not just you, but you on a literary teeter totter that asks you to carefully balance the weight of fearless self-revelation against the wisdom of graceful omission, of the factual and actual against the loosey goosey art of spinning a good yarn, of the difference between what those you write about would say about themselves against what you have to say about them, of what you can verify and what you are pretty sure you remember from a decade ago, of what really happened against the experience that’s inevitably altered and informed by your own very particular consciousness.

*****

These questions of honesty, truth, fearless revelation and art matter to me. They always have, but especially now, when what I feel is a need to honor the year that I’ve been through, while at the same time dig deeper into it through my writing. I want to be truthful about my own experience and respect the privacy of the people who were there with me. I’m not writing a memoir. I don’t know how many people will want to read the essays when I’m through, but it’s important to me that I get them right, that my decisions about what to put in and what to leave out are based on love and respect, not fear.

In many ways, this is new territory for me, this nakedness on the page. But maybe in the most essential ways, it’s what I’ve always done, what most artists do, I guess. Our journeys start with the doing (the living, the loving, the aching, the joy), and end when we attempt to make sense of it with our art.

Then, if we’re lucky, it starts all over again when what we create resonates with others and we are pulled back into the physical world, back to the doing (living, loving, aching, joyful) part again.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In case you missed it, I interviewed the crazy-talented and very generous Cheryl Strayed for Used Furniture Reivew. We talked about these questions of truth, but also motherhood and love and wildness and Sugar and her favorite books and what she’s reading now. Go, read the interview, and then her memoir, WILD, which is brave and inspiring, and the first book in a long time that I couldn’t put down.

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39 Responses to Brushing up against the edges

  1. Estrella Azul March 22, 2012 at 3:46 am #

    “Our journeys start with the doing (the living, the loving, the aching, the joy), and end when we attempt to make sense of it with our art.
    Then, if we’re lucky, it starts all over again when what we create resonates with others and we are pulled back into the physical world, back to the doing (living, loving, aching, joyful) part again.” — I can’t even add anything to this blog post, j, so I’m writing this part down and pinning it to my inspiration board right now!

    • j March 22, 2012 at 8:41 am #

      Ha! Okay then! xo

  2. kaleighsomers March 22, 2012 at 6:00 am #

    I have been away from these pages for far too long, j. And reading this reminded me why I always come back – your words are true and sometimes hard to swallow in their truthfulness.

    We spent a great deal of time discussing the idea of writing nonfiction in one of my courses last fall, how the mind plays with you, how your remembering will always be faulty, how you inevitably have to leave a piece of yourself on the page if you want it to ring true. Details are what matter. I’ve always believed that and let those escape onto the page.

    My latest project, HUGstronger, has forced me to crash into those edges, telling the world why I so desperately need to help undergraduates across the nation and overseas, why I have struggled so much in the four years since I first came to college, and what that looked like – all the blood and guts right there. So I’m a big believer in doing something for the reasons you’re talking about and navigating some sort of line between what you must tell and what you don’t have to.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 8:37 am #

      I do feel that way, that the essays I read and enjoy most are the ones where the writer is present in the work. Academic discussions never draw me in as much. In college we had to write 10 page essays without ever using “I” and I never felt I was making my case as well in those.

      In 2010, working as a journalist for an international media company, the editor would frequently send back my pieces with notes like, “this isn’t about you,” “your impressions/opinions don’t matter.” Gah! Talk about constricting. Though I understand the need for that in journalism, it’s not the kind of writing I’m drawn to generally, as a reader or a writer.

      I haven’t had time to dig into your FB HUGstronger page, but I will. I love that you’re taking on something big and important. You go, girl!

  3. Clare Flourish March 22, 2012 at 6:29 am #

    You spend a great deal of time wildly off course and struggling to find the way back, you say.

    How do you know? Serious question.

    Oh, and- I hope if we met and you wrote about me, I would understand that it was your perceptions, your feelings, rather than the Real Me skewered for all the World to see. More difficult with family and close friends, I know, but still. I could live with that, I hope.

    I seek to challenge you when I comment, because I challenge myself. This stuff matters. I need to do it better.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 7:20 am #

      I know when I’m armoring up instead of trying to be open, when I’m avoiding being vulnerable at all costs, when I’m forgetting to love the person in the room (distracted by people who are far less important to me), when I’m being petty or judgmental, when I’m losing track of myself, when I’m being unkind.

      I would hope no one I wrote about ever felt skewered for the world to see, too. I’ve let Chad and the boys read every post I’ve ever written about them to make sure they were okay with what I’ve said. I can’t imagine writing a skewering to be honest, and in the memoirs I’ve read this year (five out of the 10 books), I haven’t seen anyone being skewered like you describe.

      I’m fine with being challenged. Makes me do it better too.

  4. Milli Thornton (@MillivrsTravels) March 22, 2012 at 7:24 am #

    I loved reading this. I agree with Kaleigh about why – “Your words feel true.”

    In my own hermit crab way, almost completely oblivious to the debates going on out there, I’ve been delving into the heart of this myself, trying to figure out what’s right for me.

    One thing that bothers me about it is that this almost feels like the new commodity: writers baring their truths. If you’re not doing it, are you somehow less legit? I hate the pressure of that “pushing the envelope” thing where it seems that our global thirst for experience constantly makes the edge the place we’re all supposed to continually dwell. (And I’m not just talking about writing. Travel, for instance, is so cutting edge-cool these days that sometimes the entire thing just feels like a covert competition.)

    Which brings me back to how much of myself I want to expose. While I was trying to formulate my comment, a brief email exchange going on in another screen reminded me of my own personal compass. It’s right in front of me and it’s not just symbolic. It’s a way of knowing that comes from within and it has its own distinct signals and forms of communication. I just have to remember to listen – and to act (or refrain from acting) on the signals it gives me. Simple, but not always easy.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 8:16 am #

      Oh, Milli, I love this response, because I think you’re at the heart of it for any writer. Just because we can be revealing, write everything in a way that leaves us gutted at the end of our work, doesn’t mean that we should, or even that it’s necessary. If I want to write about, say, the value of writers groups (I know, right? Who writes about that?), I don’t have to bare my soul. And even in the Love Essays, when I’m writing about being kind and even playful with yourself in the name of self-love… it’s not the same kind of discussion as writing about the times I chose to stay in a relationship versus the times I chose to get out while I was still kind of in one piece.

      People respond to the close-to-the-bone writing because it’s reassuring to see that other people suffer from the same problems we do. I weirdly (or maybe not so weirdly) like to hear other writers’ rejection stories, especially ones that hurt because they all hurt me. I was moved by Allyssa Marie Milan’s piece, “One body’s journey,” because I knew it would speak to so many people about their deepest insecurities. BUT sometimes, as a reader, I want to laugh, or be informed, or be entertained by writers who understand what their piece is about.

      Which brings me to your compass. I love, love, love your description of that. I think I’m only just developing mine, but that’s what I hope to have too. An inner sense of what’s okay for me. I’ve been reading so much of the conversation that is happening around truth in writing. I’ve found myself lately drawn to memoir and other forms of literary nonfiction. There are things I very much want to write about because they are the things that roll around inside, the subjects around love (parenting, original families, marriage, commitment) that fascinate and affect me most, but to write about them requires me to write about other people… and, at least for now, I’m not comfortable going there.

      I’m hoping my internal compass will one day show me how. In the meantime, I think it’s good that we all keep talking about it. There is a lot of excellent writing out there… only a fraction of it is harrowing. xo

    • Milli Thornton (@MillivrsTravels) March 22, 2012 at 8:35 am #

      j, I’m relieved. I wrote what was true for me, and posted it before I could chicken out. But then I wondered if it would sound like I was criticizing the writers who are writing so honestly. I’m not, and we all need that universal experience of feeling we’re not alone. Brave writers give us that, and the courage it takes to do that cannot be underestimated.

      It’s the way the world is rigged to commercialize everything (even the most precious and sacred) that eats at me. And that’s why it’s so important to figure out what’s right for me.

      You know, I even modified my first comment because I was going to reveal some details about my inner compass. But the I realized I wasn’t ready. And maybe I never will be. Or maybe that might turn out to be part of my big honest contribution to the world. I realized I needed more time to figure it out, so I backed off and made that part more general.

      I’m into noticing symbolic messages from animal totems. I’ve been getting a message repeatedly from a particular animal. It was so repeated I felt myself becoming jaded and the message was losing impact. But, just so I would get it – REALLY get it – another type of animal came right outside my window this morning and behaved exactly like the animal that’s been pestering me with its message. I’m talking, uncharacteristic behavior that was unmistakable and really got my attention. When I went again to look at the symbolic messages from my pesky animal guide, among others pearls that I need right now this leapt out with fresh insight:

      Shelter your wisdom from predatory threat

      So, I’m listening. Big time.

      Thank you deeply for this discussion, j.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm #

      I know what you mean about the commercialization (and sensationalizing) of even the most sacred of human experience.

      Somewhere between that and retreating from the most important and meaningful writing I could do, there is a sweet spot for me. While I struggle to find my place on the spectrum, I am definitely drawn to writers who balance (in Cheryl’s words) fearless self-revelation and the wisdom of graceful omission. I think you can feel it as a reader when the writer gets that right. There is no malice in the story that gets told, now skewing as Clare said.

      Thank YOU for this discussion. It’s exactly what I was hoping for when I hit “publish.”

  5. Andrea Lewicki (@Andrea_Lewicki) March 22, 2012 at 8:34 am #

    I’ve been on a bit of a Brene Brown bender lately, and in one of her talks, she mentioned that the two most powerful words in the English language are, “Me, too.” Maybe we reveal just enough so someone else knows they are not in it alone, but not so much that they get wrapped up in our story and forget their own.

    I’ve typed and erased and retyped a few sentences here so many times that I give up. I’m just going to tell you: you are amazingly articulate when it comes to approaching that fine line, and it’s one of the things that hooked me into ZS when I first discovered it. It doesn’t make your essays easier to write, but I wanted you to know that the thoughtfulness and care you put into your writing is a certain kind of love that matters.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:43 pm #

      Aren’t we all on a Brene Brown kick? I think when you’re sitting with someone in conversation, especially someone who’s hurting, you’re absolutely right about where to draw the line. Share enough to make her comfortable, but not so much that you make it all about you. In writing, it’s a little harder to know where the line is.

      Thank you for saying that you think I get it right most of the time. A while ago, one of my commenters said that writing motivated by love wasn’t likely to go wrong. You just reminded me of that. It’s a very comforting thought.

  6. Julia Fehrenbacher March 22, 2012 at 10:11 am #

    I love you, J…that’s all I have to say right now.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

      Well, that’s a lot. Love you back, my friend.

  7. mousebert March 22, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    My reply is a Déjà vu experience. There are different kinds of truth, the factual scientific truth, literal truth and emotional truth, and others. A scientific factual truth may seem set and unchanging but be surprisingly nebulous.
    A friend’s ex told him he didn’t pay enough attention to her. He disputed that and pointed out how much time they spent together, on the phone, shopping, him buying her things, etc. He was always there when she “needed” him. Her retort was “Yes, but it doesn’t feel that way,” same facts, different truths.
    A problem I have is when someone presents a “truth’ in a manner that we assume is one kind of truth, but when discovered, claim another form. It cannot just be true, it also must be honest.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:45 pm #

      I think your example is spot on. That’s just what Stephen Elliott means, I think, when he says that “true” is a liquid thing.

      And I agree completely about truth in labeling. That’s where Mike Daisey went wrong.

  8. fictional100 March 22, 2012 at 12:24 pm #

    Judy, what wonderful responses your thoughtful words have prompted! Just as you are skilled in articulating the nuances of this issue, your readers are sensitive and articulate too. I wanted to add that when I referred to your “writing fearlessly” I was linking it to your “loving fearlessly”–in both cases, “fearlessly” doesn’t mean without fear, but the choice not to be ruled by fear. An open heart is not less wise, or even less careful, but draws on a different wisdom. Your posts show over and over how acknowledging fears enables a person to think even more clearly about their choices and implications for self and others.
    Interestingly, some of the same sorts of issues come up in writing fiction, especially historical fiction, but not limited to that. Honesty and respect for our best understanding of the truth of someone’s life come up whenever one writes.
    Thanks for all you attempt, and I look forward to reading along with you wherever you go with it.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:56 pm #

      “An open heart is not less wise, or even less careful, but draws on a different wisdom.”

      I love that. I think I’ll put it up on my board. One thing I struggled with a lot during the year (gotta make sure this is reflected in the essays) is feeling as though if I drew back (even when all my warning bells were sounding, even when I’d been hurt or attacked), that I would be failing at the goal of fearlessness. Wisdom simply has to be part of the equation.

      And yes, of course, historical writing must be the same in that you are absolutely balancing “the factual and actual against the loosey goosey art of spinning a good yarn.” I would love to talk to you more about that. I’m fascinated by how you do your work.

      In the meantime, thank you for your thoughts. They are always valuable to me.

  9. Pam March 22, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

    You made me think of Mark Twain’s autobiography. He came to the conclusion that a person cannot write an honest autobiography if he or she imagines contemporaries reading it. I think this arose from particular facts in his life & personality, and so his conclusion was too sweeping, but it is not easy.

    I’m confident you’re on the right track in looking at the reasons you might not want to write about an aspect of your experience. Look, then trust your gut.

    I’m also confident that the essays are going to rock. xo

    • j March 22, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

      My version of Mark Twain’s maxim is that you can’t write an honest autobiography (or memoir or essay or blog post) if you imagine your parents reading it. :)

      I try not to think about that.

      Thank you for your confidence in me. You have no idea how much that helps.

  10. Tall Pajama Man March 22, 2012 at 2:35 pm #

    you have some good stuph up in here, J. A couple of things struck me (like the fact that you are no guru… right… :-) ) that I’m mulling over, and want to comment back later. I think sometimes our gurus are only the ones who have opened the door for us, not that they have all the answers. You have definitely done that with us, helping us see love in a whole new light.

    Anyway, gotta get back to it, prep for another 3-4 meetings today. More stuph later.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

      Thanks, TPM. I’m okay with “Door Opener.” I’ll keep that title! :)

  11. Annie Neugebauer (@AnnieNeugebauer) March 22, 2012 at 3:31 pm #

    I certainly empathize with your struggle here. One of my books of poetry is autobiographical. It’s essentially memoir in verse, and it was very, very hard to write – largely for the reasons you talk about here. In the end, what I did was write in raw truth and edit in conceptual truth. Does that make sense? I needed to write things exactly, perfectly accurate and painful honest. But sometimes respect for others means tweaks in edits. So when I edited and compiled and revised – and found myself tempted to take something out – I just asked myself, “If I take this out, would it delete meaning for someone who doesn’t know?” as well as, “Do I want to take this out for me, or for my family?” I let those answers guide my decisions, and I’m pretty satisfied with the results. I’m sure you’ll find your own way as you go.

    • j March 22, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

      That’s a great idea. I did that with the Body Math post, actually. I struggled so much with that piece, trying to decide what I could say and still hit “publish.” I wound up writing a piece that was at least twice as long as the one I posted, then editing.

      This is like a deeply emotional version of embracing the shitty first draft. Trusting myself to get it right during the editing process. Annie… that may be the best advice I’ve gotten. Thank you!

      p.s. Is that book of your poetry available for purchase?

  12. cjpatton March 22, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    Here’s the thing when writing nonfiction (and probably fiction too): you need to be willing to reveal it all. That’s where the fearlessness comes in. I can say from personal experience that’s its incredibly tough to do but also quite liberating. Speaking the truth is a powerful thing, as your recent (and beautiful) posts revealed.

    As for writing about the other people in your life, the best advice I ever got was to write from a place of love. No matter what you reveal about them, always come from a place of love. I know you can do this, Judy. And remember this: if you speak your truth and write about others with respect and love, then how they feel about your words is not your problem. That’s their issue. You are not responsible for other people’s feelings. Only your own. By this I do not mean that you get a free pass to hurt their feelings. Only that you shouldn’t shy away from speaking your truth because you are worried about what others might think or feel.

    Keep writing, Judy. In my experience, if you write about others with love, they will tolerate you revealing pretty much anything….

    • j March 22, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

      Thank you, Cynthia. I understand what you’re saying and I agree, but I think you also have to be willing to live with the consequences of what you’ve written. If what you write makes someone you love uncomfortable or hurts their feelings or makes them feel terribly exposed when they never would have exposed themselves that way, can you live with knowing you’ve done that? Right now, I’m finding my way through that… sometimes the answer is yes and sometimes it’s no. And I think that’s what “graceful omission” means.

      Writing from love. Yes. That is the key.

  13. Lance March 22, 2012 at 5:21 pm #

    Do you ever sit down to write and say to yourself “why am I writing this? or “what is this really about”?

    The two fiction pices I’m working on, Helene Troy and Soul To Body, are essentially parts of my subconscious that cover the pain, sin, redemption, struggle, amends, and second life I’ve experienced over the past 7 years.

    Through fiction and some non fiction, I’m deconstructing the mess I made of my life and documenting the rebuild. Late at night, I’ll remove my glasses, look at the notebook page or computer screen and cry. It’s actually the most screwed up beautiful thing you’ve ever seen.

    What I’m gathering from your essays is you know who and what you are and you’re not only making sens eof it, but you’re celebrating yourself.

    I can’t wait to read more.

    • j March 23, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      “Through fiction and some non fiction, I’m deconstructing the mess I made of my life and documenting the rebuild.” That’s a beautiful reason to write what you write, Lance. I love that.

      I’ve always thought the “why I write” question is interesting. I have many reasons that are about connection, communication, understanding, purpose… in the end, though, I write because I can’t not write. It’s not the best reason, but it is the truest.

      I can’t wait for you to read more too. xo

      • Lance March 23, 2012 at 9:09 am #

        The truest reason IS the best reason. I write because I can’t NOT write, too.

  14. Karen L Hogan March 23, 2012 at 9:54 am #

    I’ve thought about your post and “dilemma” for the past day. I can’t remember whether it was on zebrasounds or itsahumanthing where one woman thought “authentic” had more strength than “vulnerability.” I tend to agree with her, and think that if one is authentic, one has recognized one’s vulnerability.

    You talk about living with the consequences. I think no matter what you do you will need to live with the consequences, so being authentic to me is the guidepost. The most important thing is what you reveal about yourself to yourself.

    Graceful omission to me means that what you omit isn’t necessary to the story. I wrote a non-fiction story about my relationships with my father that included the years before and during the time he sank into Alzheimers. It was on maybe the 4th draft that I realized i had left out an important part of the story — I did not let him give me away at my wedding. When I added that to the story, it deepened it and me — I had to come to a deep understanding of how abuse had molded my father, why I had made that decision, its impact on him, why I did not feel guilty about having made that decision, and what was at the core of my relationship with him. I strongly suspect that some people think I’m an asshole for having made that decision given that my father was not your basic asshole. He did not abuse me, but because of his abused childhood, he had projected an innocence on to me that he thought would restore his.

    The origins of my writing the story came from an assignment: write a story about deep love.

    I look forward to your essays. I have felt that you were skirting the edges in your posts, talking about fearless loving and writing bravely, but they seem more about telling than showing.

    Take some risks, be true to your story, and you’ll make the right (write) decisions.

    • j March 23, 2012 at 10:23 am #

      Thanks, Karen. Taking risks and being true to the story is definitely the plan.

    • nuttin' March 24, 2012 at 6:03 am #

      I have to disagree with the “skirting the issue”. On the contrary, I think these writings have been brave and honest and on the edge of beautifully complicated muses.
      I’m no writer, but I am a reader, and if (even thought I know the point of these are not memoir) the story goes far enough that it captures my heart and allows me to say “me too”, then I’m in it for the long haul. But, if too much is revealed it borders on self-indulgent.
      I think these posts have been the perfect balance of reveal and conceal. And yes… I think j, like most of us, are camping on that edge and welcoming the risks.
      I can see “The Love Essays” morphing into something incredible like say… The Vagina Monologues… but better.

    • j March 24, 2012 at 8:25 am #

      Thank you! And yes, that line between naval gazing (as my friend Michael Lockhart calls it) and drawing from the personal to make a larger, more universal point is one I don’t want to cross, here or in the essays. I think I have a lot of room to work with; the essays are certainly making me think through what, exactly, lies at the heart of each piece.

      Thank you so much for your encouragement. xo

    • nuttin' March 24, 2012 at 11:00 am #

      No worries. :-)

  15. Joanne Marie Firth March 23, 2012 at 7:46 pm #

    I can’t wait to read your essays.

    • j March 24, 2012 at 8:26 am #

      BIG smile. Thank you, Joanne. I can’t wait either.

  16. Lisa March 24, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

    J —

    This post exactly explains why I decided to quit the blog and start the new one and then promptly fell off the face of the earth for six months. I thought, “yes, I want to write the stuff, I want to see why and figure out why and put it out there and grow.” So I did.

    And as soon as the task was really before me, I just …. couldn’t do it. I thought of my penchant for embellishment. God, how I embellish. Seriously, it’s amazing sometimes when people listen to my stories. Sometimes I have to stop myself before I get going. I would write and stop and write and stop. I’ve got so many unpublished drafts on that blog and only 6 or so published ones. fear, man. Straight fear. And the possibility of hurting someone’s feelings (my mother’s.) And the possibility of being told my shit didn’t matter anyway. The possibility of being way too self-involved. (I am.)

    Thanks for this post. It hit the spot. I’ma write you an email one of these days. :)

    • j March 25, 2012 at 1:26 pm #

      I wondered what happened to inspire you to move to new digs and change your content.

      The possibility of hurting someone’s feelings, or revealing things they are not comfortable revealing (and would never have revealed on their own) is no small thing. That’s why I don’t think it’s as simple as just being authentic and loving in our rendering (though that is necessary). I think you really have to consider the people you love and decide what you can live with in terms of fallout.

      The self-involved piece… I do believe, on that one, we just have to think of what we’re giving to the world. My friend sometimes blogs about his experiences as his mother surrenders more and more to Alzheimer’s. He used to worry (maybe still does) that those posts were too self-indulgent, but I argued with him that his writing helps others in the same position. Or people like me who are very interested in reading about the human condition, in all its sad, crazy, beautiful forms.

      Though I haven’t read everything on your site, I love your personal writing. I think our stories connect us and to the extent that we can be generous in the telling, they are valuable.

    • j March 25, 2012 at 1:28 pm #

      p.s. You can email me ANYTIME!

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