You might only have one chance to make the right not write impression.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Be Careful What You Write...

After writing my books, "Laboring to Love an Abusive Mate" and "When Mothers Cry," I didn't expect that life would be any easier as a result.  These books were meant to be a release of past burdens.  I didn't anticipate major book sales and made no plans to get these books in local stores.  Making money wasn't even on the "to do" list.  What was important to me first and foremost was saving lives.  "If one woman could walk away from an abusive relationship as a result then it was worth writing the 'Laboring to Love...' book," I thought; and if another could walk away from her children before she abused them, then "When Mothers Cry" was worth it too! 

When you write your reality, your truth about any circumstance, it is a given that you will face more challenges.  It seems as if you are tested by everyone you know.  "You should know better, you wrote the book," an advisor preaches.  "I read your book and wow, I didn't know you went through so much, what do you think about...?" the reader questions.  You are expected to know more than the average person and most of all you have now put yourself in a position to help others whether you set out to do that or not.

People want answers to their problems.  This is the main reason why people even bother to read anything that anyone writes.   "Can you solve my problem? Can you ease my pain?  Do you have any wisdom to help me through my trial?"  People want to be encouraged.  There are times when I read my own work seeking a bit of information to help me deal with a dilemma.  I admit that sometimes I forget what I write.  It helps to go back and reflect.

At times, as a writer, you will regret some things you have said or wish you said more.  I can't think of anything in particular that I regret writing, but I can remember how some of my articles made people react negatively and then I wished that they never read them; notice I didn't say I wished I never wrote them.  No matter what my good intentions were in writing a piece, people will not always react positively.  However, there were also those who agreed with my points in some of the same controversial work as well.  If one left a positive comment, then in my mind, the rest of the folks didn't matter.

I advise any writer, like I would any speaker, to be careful what you write.  If you can't say it in person, don't write it!  I have watched interviews where people backed down from what they have said and I wanted to just throw a shoe at the TV.  "Take a stand!  Don't back down!  You know you said it, so stick with it!" There will be those times when someone may push you to speak your truth even when you aren't quite ready, but rather than cave into the pressure, carefully consider everything first.  I have had to do that.  How will what I write impact my future?  Is it necessary to reveal secrets?  Should I talk about everything about a situation or just the revelant points?

It wasn't easy putting my first book together, because I had to look back.  I had to go back and read the poetry I wrote while the abuse was going on.  This meant that everything that happened over that nine-month period in my life had to be relived.  I was irritable and impatient at times while putting that book together.  It wasn't easy putting my second book together either, because I had to be honest about how the people, places, things, and reactions around me affected my being a mother.  Sometimes you step on toes when you think about how people and things make you feel, but like a cauldron of hearty soup needs meat and potatoes, what people did or said goes in the pot.  You might have to deal with readers speaking negatively about your book.  If you are more interested in keeping the peace amongst family and friends when you tell a personal story, then don't write a book.  But, if it means more to you to pen your truth, then do it!  However, keep in mind that you will need to be careful what you say.  You also might lose someone from your inner circle in the process too.

Nicholl McGuire

Thursday, August 18, 2011

My Parents are Going to Die, But I Might Before Them

The reality of death sets in the older you get.  For me the realization that one day my parents will die became especially heartfelt when one of them became deathly ill a few years back.  It is almost morbid to mention "death" or "dying" when you are talking to your parents, but it is an all-too important reality.  Therefore, when I realized this hard truth, I began to ponder, "How would their death impact me?"  Well, if you want your parents to be buried with dignity and some class, it would make sense to find out what they have in their financial portfolios to ensure that this gets done.  It would also make sense to find out that in the event that your parents don't die, but just become very ill, where to put them.  You could start this process by asking simple questions about their daily living.  Then maybe another time mention your thoughts on what to do in the event of an emergency, illness or death.  You may also want to talk about assets, beneficiaries, and what might they want you to do if they can't handle their business affairs.  Some parents may be okay with conversations like these when they are broken down over a period of time while others may take offense.  You may have to do your own investigative work, so that you aren't caught off guard if your parents should pass.

After talking to my parents about my concerns, I had a thought that passed through my mind that they may outlive me and if this is the case, then hopefully they will do something nice for the grandchildren in my absence.  I personally don't have much for my children, if I would die today or tomorrow, but I have some things they might be interested in.

Sometimes we are so caught up in routine, that we fail to do a lot of things including making sure that we, us and they are taken care of in the future.  I think too many of us have a "wait and see" mentality.  "Let's just deal with that issue when it comes..."  But whose to say, we will have it altogether when that time is upon us?

I know that lifestyle has a lot to do with how long someone lives.  I also know that there will always be exceptions to the rule, but I have to remind myself that I am not that person who is the exception, so the rules might be different for me.

I have been hearing people say little cliches like, "Think positive..." but it is the negative people who often say it.  It's almost as if they are trying to convince themselves aloud.  However, we can do a whole lot of thinking positive, but that isn't going to render results without us actually doing something.

Death as we all know is final!  When I am speaking with people offline, it seems as if they are more interested in defending their lifestyle choices, their foolish decisions, and other things that are slowly eating away at their relationships with others, their physical and spiritual bodies (among other things) that they are literally running away from the truth!

"This world is not my home, I am just passing through," an elderly person once told me.  So true, and because this is not my home, I am a mere guest trying to be on my best behavior until my spiritual father calls me home.

Nicholl McGuire