Writing is very cathartic for me. As a teacher, I hear many students say that writing can be painful and exhausting. It can be, but ultimately I believe that if you push through, the process is healing and exhilarating.
I think depression creates in me an urgent need to write, but I also believe that daily stress, and even the positive 'stress' of intense happiness, can compel me to express myself through the written word.
Writing is literally transformative. When we read, we are changed. When we write, we are changed. It's neurological. To me, this is a kind of magic.
Write with abandon and no constraints for first draft. Cut brutally and save in separate files on second draft. Add conflict; don't be afraid to make your characters suffer. Read what you love. Write what you love. Love.
It's scary to become a woman in this world. We have to understand that some of the messages we get, messages that we are not enough, are there to keep our power in check. We can't buy into these messages.
I love Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton. I also love more cerebral poets like H.D. and Emily Dickinson. My parents subscribed to a monthly poetry periodical, and as a teenager I was introduced to Denise Levertov, who was an influence.
I am constantly thinking ahead to what I want to write about in the future, and when I'm done with one project, I give myself a little time and then start the next one.
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