Friday, February 16, 2007

"Girlfriend in a Coma, I Know/I Know - It's Serious"*

I have been trying to write up a post about writing and trauma for the last hour, inspired by this post.

I guess I'm still in a bad enough place that I don't feel like I can talk about it. Of course, much of my reluctance is that so much of the current situation would also be talking about the private business of somebody else, and that's not kewl.

So here I am.

Suffice to say that things have not been great for me or my roommate/Clarionmate/formergirlfriend/friend for the last year. There were bad relationships prior to us getting together, professional failures before and after we got together, a bad breakup, subsequent meltdowns, more professional failures, a job layoff, and let's not even get started on the whole, "Surprise you have a chronic illness"/"OMG Kameron's in a coma in the bathroom fucking shit fuck fuck fuck!!" thing. Cause that's some heavy shit to deal with on top of everything else. Or, shit to deal with as a nice appetizer before the meltdown.

We've chosen to deal with our pain and grief in very different ways, and I hope that, just as I'm rebuilding, she will continue to rebuild as well, and in twenty years we'll be better people.

Because, yes, at the end of the day, you do have to go on. If you don't go on, you die. If you choose to dwell in the darkness, it will devour you. You must find a new life outside of that. It's not like you're going to forget the darkness, it's not like it's going to go away, but you can build a place in the sun somewhere, knowing that the sun is all the brighter because you are one of those who knows what it's like in the dark.

I wrote the bulk of GW when I was slowly dying, when my personal relationships were bouncing all over the place just like my sugar numbers, during a time where I wasn't doing a lot of higher level thinking. It was all about this thing, and the next thing, and sleeping, and drinking water, mmmm sweet sweet water....

It's no surprise that when I was done with GW and still recovering from the mess of my life, dealing with a lot of resulting emotional craziness on both ends in this house, that I decided that GW wasn't a book, it was bookS. I didn't want to start my next stand-alone project just yet. I needed to work with this character and this world. I wanted to work through the issues I had to deal with in the life of this bloody, strong, brutally traumatized woman who masked all her weakness with witticism and pretended she was fine when she wasn't, and was, in reality, only alive because of the good graces or serious fuckups of others, and who knew it, but told herself a lot of stories about why that wasn't so, becuase those were the stories she needed to tell herself in order to go on.

And on the one hand, I worry that the GW books will end up being nothing more than Mary Sue-ish books, the sort of cathartic writing we all have to do every once in a while to get through the worst of things. On the other hand, I think they could be some of the best of what writers do: culling all the shit and blood in our own lives, mixing it up with what we've seen and heard and read of others, and making something new and powerful and wonderful out of it, something people can connect with.

That would be great if it happened.

In the meantime, it certainly gets *me* through the day, and believe me, right now, that's a really fucking great thing.


2 comments so far. What are your thoughts?

David said...

The only think Mary Sue-ish about Nyx is that people seem to like her and stick by her for no apparent reason. People do have reasons for liking you, you know. :)

Kameron Hurley said...

And damned if I know why they like *me* either!

But even if I did, of course, it wouldn't help me out with Nyx. I may be able to relate to her, but I don't chop off peoples' heads for a living :) (though it might be an exciting career change!!!)