Monday, March 24, 2008

today's heaping helping of fun

The molestation story is up for critique tonight, in class. I'm not sure how I'm going to feel about reading the exciting portions of it out loud and then listening to the debate on how 'realistic' it appears to be. In some ways, that debate tends to crack me up. I always want to laugh at the, 'this never happens in real life' group, as much because it's silly as because I'm sitting there, remembering the events as I listen to people talk about the story. I do take it seriously; the whole thing has to appeal realistic to a group of readers. However, the difference between I think this is realistic and this did/did not happen is a larger one than often gets treated in classes in a practical sense. We talk about it, as a frame for critique, but it appears to be difficult to maintain in application. I have freely admitted that there is an autobiographical bent to my fiction and poetry, but since I do not tell people which parts are autobiographical, and no one asks, I am always surprised what parts people think are autobiography. And how often what I'm thinking in a piece becomes something I'd do. I have all kinds of thoughts, sometimes very random ones, and none of them mean I'm going to do anything in particular. They are, after all, thoughts. I'd like to think I have at least a little common sense.

But that's self-evaluation.

I feel a little creeped by it, honestly; I have competing drives to talk about my experiences, since I had no one to tell for so long, and to hide them, since people who haven't had those experiences judge the crap out of you. If I didn't believe it needed to be said, I wouldn't bother to write about it, since sitting there in the shit storm is a little disheartening (some critiques are better than others, but it is difficult to not feel as if your character is being evaluated. Sometimes it is and you have to sit there quietly while your classmates and professor savage your intellect, personality and publishing prospects.)

We shall see what I can make of it, tonight. If it gets too bad, I doodle in the margins. I find a doodle distracting.

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