Writer's Lounge

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Writer's Lounge
« on: September 26, 2017, 06:43:40 AM »
Writer's Lounge - a place where we can share our writing projects (past or current), novels, ideas, experiences, and maybe even how CPTSD can affect our writing and our plots.
I don't think it should be a place to share short stories and what not, because we have the entire "Poetry and Creative Writing" section for that. This thread can just be for talking about the writing rather than the actual sharing of said writing. :)

For myself, I started writing when I could start typing. Though I mainly do it for fun, and have only taken one year of an actual writing class. I've actually made a novella, not really done much with it though and it needs a huge amount of editing and redrafting done. But I have an ongoing novel project, fictional piece set in medieval like times.

I'd be interested to know what kind of themes you guys write of, and I'm wondering if maybe those with CPTSD/those who have experienced trauma write things a little differently or at least are more likely to write about trauma like events. My stories have always been on the dark and heavy side, horror, fear, action. My English Writer's teacher even nicknamed me 'Little Darkling' because of all the really depressing things I was writing about haha. Oops. (And don't take that with offense on my behalf please, I actually liked that nickname very much)
For my end of year class project, I had to finish three short stories. Only one had a happy ending, and funnily enough I can't remember what it was about. The other two, one was of gore and running away. The other was my attempt at a schizophrenic's point of view. Maybe the dark themes is just me though. I'm really curious as to what kind of things you guys write about. :)

Thanks to Liminality and JamesG for the idea of this thread. ^-^
(nervous laughter)
Status: Living with my FOO, planning to move out in January! :) So close!

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Sceal

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2017, 07:05:40 AM »
I will probably give a better  answer when I am not on my phone.

The first story I ever was a part of creating was in Kindergarten. About 3 years before I could actually write. It was a ghost story.  I think I still got it somewhere.  After that it was a mix of this and that, but mostly stories that never had an ending. For a while I wrote bad poetry. That was all about anxiety, depression, hearing voices.
The book that I wrote and illustrated together with other artist is about realising  and overcoming fear.

I prefer now, to write stories that I hope connect with others and where people can somehow see that there is hope in the darkness.

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Liminality

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2017, 08:04:46 AM »
No, thank you Aphotic for coming up with the idea of turning our discussion into a thread of its own! :))

Writing has been a part of my life for as long as I remember. Started before even being able to properly write, with little comics made of drawings, lines of gibberish and lots of exclamation points, often asking older kids to help me with the words. Around ten I wrote down my own (horrible) twist on campfire scary tales, got a bit of positive attention for it (meaning no-strings-attached positive attention from non-abusive people), and decided right there and then that this would be what I would do for the rest of my life.

As a teen I dabbled into (bad) poetry a little, but it didn't suit me so I quickly moved on to short stories and novels. Just as you Aphotic, most of my themes were very dark, not really violent or graphic but very depressing. Around the end of high-school I was writing short stories about a child that refuses to be born and chooses death instead, a girl framed as a witch by her jealous sister and who ends up burning at the stake, and tried my hand at the schizophrenic point of view too. Most of my characters ended up dying, probably half because of depression/CPTSD, half because a lot of the entertainment media (books, movies, etc.) I used to be fan of at the time used resurrection tropes like time travel, MacGuffins that literally brought people back to life, or reincarnation. Death never being definitive allowed me to kill off characters without feeling terrible about it (seeing as I loved them more than most people I saw in the "real world").

Things changed a lot in my twenties, between moving away from my FOO and the meltdown (and subsequent hellish hospitalisation experience) that led to be (mis)diagnosed BPD. I lost my craft for four full years, then found it back again (though right now I'm struggling again). It had a huge influence on my themes though. To paraphrase one of my favourite books, where I used to write about death I now write about murder. But what happened to me also let me found light inside because it put everything into such sharp contrasts, and though I still can't write (or stand) happy endings, now at least I can write about hope, and overcoming darkness.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2017, 08:06:52 AM by Liminality »
No hugs please. They make me feel trapped and unsafe.

English is not my first language. Please excuse (and point out to me) any awkwardness.

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Fen Starshimmer

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2017, 08:53:26 AM »
I love this idea AphoticAtramentous, a place to chat about writing. I also love your name, which I had to look up. So, I've increased my vocabulary already by joining this thread!

Writing is a topic dear to my heart. Journal writing has kept me sane in my darkest, saddest, most triggered moments; the only place I have felt safe enough to express myself honestly and freely. I started writing diary notes when I was about 7 or 8 years old. Then soon after, there was a long gap in my life of many years, when I kept this writing need shut away. My English teacher at school was always critical of anything I wrote, so as soon as I could I stopped writing. Then, many years later, when my chaotic life calmed down a bit, and I had some time to myself, I started writing a story based on some of my journals (which I'd started a few years before). I also joined a writers' forum.  As it turned out, the forum also gave me the encouragement I needed. I now have several drafts of stories lying around, unfinished, and.... drumroll...have found a publisher for my short story.

Quote
I'd be interested to know what kind of themes you guys write of, and I'm wondering if maybe those with CPTSD/those who have experienced trauma write things a little differently or at least are more likely to write about trauma like events. My stories have always been on the dark and heavy side, horror, fear, action. My English Writer's teacher even nicknamed me 'Little Darkling' because of all the really depressing things I was writing about haha. Oops. (And don't take that with offense on my behalf please, I actually liked that nickname very much)

This is a great question that interests me too. Looking back, I see that all of my stories have started off as extracts from my journals. They are heavily influenced by my experience of life. And yes, they are not at the lighthearted end of the spectrum. I find myself gravitating towards crime, horror and paranormal, domestic violence, abuse of all kinds. Despite the dark nature of these topics, I make sure I have fun with them.... because as a writer, I am in control. I can have my characters do what I want  :)

Hi Liminality,
Quote
To paraphrase one of my favourite books, where I used to write about death I now write about murder. But what happened to me also let me found light inside because it put everything into such sharp contrasts, and though I still can't write (or stand) happy endings, now at least I can write about hope, and overcoming darkness.

I feel a bit like that...  I struggle with the happy endings, but hope is easier, having my characters go through an arc that transforms them, leaving them somewhere better. Getting justice is another type of ending I can handle, which is a sort of happy ending.

Hi Sceal
Quote
I prefer now, to write stories that I hope connect with others and where people can somehow see that there is hope in the darkness.
That's great!  Best of luck with your writing. There's so many of us who need to feel hope, and stories can take us there.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2017, 02:30:50 AM by Fen Starshimmer »
Healing is the outcome of reversing longstanding patterns of self-alienation and building the capacity to love and accept our 'selves'.

Janina Fisher, Chapter 1
Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors

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green tree sky

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2017, 10:36:50 PM »
really like the idea of writers' lounge AphoticAtramentous. Two great words making your nick nome by the way!

At school, my writing was dismissed and given low marks so I did not pursue it, I became interested in writing once I discovered journalling at about 38. After thinking I could not write to save my life I actually saw that I had some level of eloquence.

I am not good at stories but do OK with poetry/poetic prose, most usually I write about land and nature.  I published a book of poetry and ephemeral artworks (small artworks made out of things found in the bush) a couple years ago which is both good and bad - the toxic shame of imposter syndrome overtook me and made me feel it was the worst thing I ever did. I also practiced as a sculptor for a while until it too got taken over by imposter syndrome.

I certainly do not write about humans other than as a destructive force. I think when you grow up in a family where "you" and your "I am" is never validated as worthy of anything, human livings holds little interest. I have always found nature to give me some sense of space - of connection, I never feel small in nature.

hi Fen Starshimmer
drumroll...have found a publisher for my short story.

congratulations that is brilliant news

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sherry

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2017, 02:32:38 PM »
Writing has always been the safest form of expression for me. I've recently completed a first draft of a memoir, the idea being to communicate the 38 years of abuse by those closest to me but without hurting anyone who read it. I have given it to my first reader to mark up with questions and suggestions. Now I don't know what to do with myself.
where there is hope there is life

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rbswan

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2017, 05:53:50 PM »
Thanks for the thread, what I great idea.  Like I've heard from others, I've dabbled in a lot of bad dark poetry as well.  I've written a lot of short stories over the years but have never showed them to anyone.  Most were dark and involved a protagonist who is trying to overcome some obstacle, solve a mystery, or find meaning in spite of his depression or addictions.  I've journaled for years as well and write, in some form or another, a lot.

I've been thinking of an idea for a horror/fantasy story about some group therapy members uncovering an ancient truth behind all trauma.  Somehow coming across the "source" through their T taking them through an ancient "therapy ritual" and being able to see the truth of consciousness.  Something about facing a driving evil that has infected humans and is passed on.  It's probably a salvation fantasy I'm having for myself.  Also, it kind of sounds like the plot of many Steven King novels.  My inner critic squashes it every time.  Plus I want to always honor the truth of CPTSD and don't want to write something that cheapens any of this, even if I'm the only one reading it.

I've also considered a coming of age story based on my life, but with a hopeful/sad/soulful ending.  I'm sure that is common.  Great topic and I love hearing what others have written, want to write and have enjoyed writing.
And I will never, ever, ever, ever grow so old again ~ Van Morrison

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Fen Starshimmer

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2017, 03:51:07 PM »
Thanks GreenTree Sky  ;D Though, have to admit, sadly I had to cancel the publishing agreement due to a series of problems with the publisher. Am now self-publishing.
Writing has always been the safest form of expression for me. I've recently completed a first draft of a memoir, the idea being to communicate the 38 years of abuse by those closest to me but without hurting anyone who read it. I have given it to my first reader to mark up with questions and suggestions. Now I don't know what to do with myself.
Congrats on completing your first draft. I think it can be very therapeutic writing a memoir. Hope you get some helpful feedback from your first reader. I think these kinds of reader are called 'Beta readers'.

Rbswan - I LOVE the sound of your horror/fantasy story. 


 :yeahthat:

Big Stephen King fan here. 

Healing is the outcome of reversing longstanding patterns of self-alienation and building the capacity to love and accept our 'selves'.

Janina Fisher, Chapter 1
Healing the Fragmented Selves of Trauma Survivors

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Blueberry

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2018, 01:25:53 PM »
For a while on and off I've been working at translating bits of children's books, with an eye to working partially in that field. At present I'm actually translating something for a specific child. I've put quite a few hours in today and just thought I'd finally mention it. I don't have to come up with a story line, characters and plot like the rest of you on this thread. Nevertheless literary translation is a creative activity.

I won't be even attempting to get this published, partly because it's not into my native language (makes a difference).

While I work away at it, I am noticing that I'm getting better bit by bit. I'm coming up with solutions, feeling less worried that what I'm doing may be 'wrong' in some way. I'm even enjoying doing it! Mostly anyway.
Should is
never good,
for me.

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Sceal

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2018, 01:08:50 AM »
Well done Blueberry!
Translation is a hard thing to do, rarely can you translate something directly and it'll have the right sentence structure!   :cheer:

I would love to write another children's book. But I work best in teams, and i don't know where to find such a team. However, I've been world building a campaign for dungeons and dragons. It's quite a lot of fun.

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Ketayl

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Re: Writer's Lounge
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2018, 08:08:27 PM »
Iím a bit late to the party. Iím a writer by trade now, but as much as people think itís amazing, I keep seeing it as my means of escape. Has been most of my life. My husband got his hands on a rough version of my 1st book years ago (which btw freaked me out and sent me into a panic because I always hid my writing) and insisted I push to get it published. Just released the 3rd in the series with editing the 4th.

And also just realized (since I just found out about it with myself) that I inadvertently wrote my main character with C-PTSD. I feel really bad, but at the same time I wouldnít change her if it was even an option at this point.