Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A story from a friend

I have a close friend who is an author. She may be a bit shy of me calling her that, but I just finished reading her 155 page book. It isn't published yet, but should be in the near future. I think I enjoyed parts of it more than I would have if I hadn't known who wrote it, it was like I could hear her speaking the parts of several characters. 
She gave me permission to post a snip-it here. This is the conclusion, basically an adolescent girls take on life after attempting to learn from others.  Enjoy...

“What do you get when you try and tell other people’s stories before ever acknowledging your own? A whole lot of fluff. Sure, the facts and figures, people and places sound good and noteworthy, but they’re all full of air. There’s no juice or momentum behind the words, and although people may find your writing glamorous or informational, it’s unlikely they’ll be touched by a story that was so untouched by you.

I grew up writing, and while I did so, I remained untouched by the events I covered, the people I talked to, and the places I visited. I thought it would be my livlihood to continue to report news to people. Now I know I’m more impressed with telling a story in its fullness. I’ve learned to let go of some of the facts and show opinions. I’ve found it’s better to allow a character to feel something now and then.

My own story is long and was not my intention for this piece at all. It seems unjust if I focus on myself instead of the two lives I decided to highlight in the beginning. However, I believe there will be a time and a place for me to tell their stories, for they have wrapped their lives around mine in a way I cannot fully describe. For now, I will try to sum up what I’ve learned.

Each person owns his or her story, but some need a little help telling it. Some people are born artists and others intellectuals. I was born a storyteller.

My story is painfully complex and completely simple at the same time. I was born to good, hard working parents. I’ve been loved and appreciated. I haven’t lived long, but sometimes I feel like I’ve had to take on enough for two lives. I’ve had a lot of friends, but never been close to any of them until I met three special people, two that I now know well, and one that I feel I’ll never really know. I don’t even know if her name is her real name. I don’t think I’ll ever ask her, either, because if it’s a pen name or a made up name, it’s a pretty good one. Her name is an oxymoron for who she is. There’s not a bit of sourness in this person at all. She allowed me, and all of us who met her this year, to view life in the clearest way. It’s another oxymoron actually, that life is understood most clearly when muddling through dirty water. What is true and good, but sometimes a little messy is found in the gray space, not in the black and white.”

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