Writing Goals: July 20-26
*Complete draft revision of this chapter and send to advisor by end of Friday (a whole week early!!!)
*Write one page of the Beijing Memoir
*Continue posting daily at The Prosecco Life
*Post midweek at SWIM
*Continue daily yoga practice
Reward: A Grande Dark Mocha Berry Frappuccino with Whipped Cream, and a long afternoon spent reading inspirational and entrepreneurial books at Borders. And maybe an acupuncture session, depending on cost and just how bad my TMJ is by the time the chapter goes out.
This is the first time I've mentioned anything on here about "The Beijing Memoir." Honestly, it is the first time I've articulated it as anything other than a joke. But this is a story that has been hanging around in my head now for two whole years, banging on the bars of the cage in which I vainly tried to keep it locked and generally keeping me up at night. It has finally rattled the hinges off the cage door and sits snarling on the mangled metal. Thank you, Julia Cameron.
I experienced some truly crazy shizzle while living in China a few years ago. No, that's an understatement; it was some bizarrely unrivaled and savagely wack-ass shizzle. Now, there are a ton of memoirs out there written by foreigners who lived in China - and I mean a ton, of varying quality - all trying to promote the "wack-ass shizzle" they dealt with. None of their stories come close to mine. And this is my "niche": in none of the other memoirs out there has this particular topic been touched upon.
What happened in Beijing during that period profoundly affected me in every single way you can imagine, and some ways even I can't articulate. But it makes for a rockin' story. Frankly, it makes for such a good story that only two people in my circle know anything about it at all: Darcy and my best friend, and even they only know about 1%. This is the kind of story you either don't talk about at all, or write a book about and tell everyone.
Here's the issue, and why it hasn't been written down before: putting it "out there" publicly runs the risk of dramatically damaging at least one person's career and might even cost several people their lives if the details can be traced correctly. This story is downright dangerous. That statement is not a melodramatic cry for attention; this is hard cold fact, born of a lot of thought. And yet, keeping it seething inside is starting to eat me alive.
So what do I do? Write it as fiction? Write it in my journal where no one will see? Write it as a memoir and have it published in thirty years, when the recent past becomes the distant past and there is less of a chance that people will get hurt? Just write the darn thing down and see what happens? What do YOU think?
But this week, I am going to yoke up some courage and write down the first page of that story. And that is so much harder than getting this chapter out the door.