Food for thought. On writing a memoir

My intentions are to blog about once a week and I am not meeting that commitment. The time just slips away as I enjoy summer, look for one thing or another for my new home and struggle with a manuscript. Occasionally I take photos of pieces of furniture, but also of unusual sights. Although it isn't unusual to see a dog on the subway, yesterday was the first time I saw one so comfortably ensconced that I didn't notice it (him/her) at first. An excuse at least to blog and share the photo. And to talk about what I am writing. Figuring that my process is probably not so different from that of other writers. It likely isn't the least bit unusual that I go out and do various errands and come back with renewed energy, sometimes ideas. And when I do, am grateful it seems often to work that way.

The memoir mentioned in previous posts is what I am working on now. The first few chapters have been difficult as I attempt to capture my early years in a northern Quebec mining camp and some family history. Later on in the story, the words and images come more easily. But it is those early years that formed so much of my later journey. And as I realize what an urban creature I have become, I know nonetheless that the geography and camaraderie of that long ago childhood are never very far away from me.

What a treat it was to go north even a little way this summer and see the rocks on the sides of the highway as we approached a rustic retreat called the shack that my children visit every summer for part of their holiday. The rocks remind me of the further north I lived in for all the years I was growing up and inspire me to go on writing about that. Although now I have moved onto further chapters...that is the crucible in which my worldview was formed. I suppose everyone who attempts to write a memoir has to confront how both the inspiring and difficult moments of childhood impinge on us throughout our lives.

Posted on August 13, 2012 .