On writing: Personal?

I read the blogs of many writers and poets. Some are such better poets and writers than I that I sometimes despair. But let’s set that aside for now.

I see that many will tag a post as personal. Something that makes sense in the abstract but something I don’t, viscerally, understand. Everything I write is personal.

From the poem that asks you to “tell me” to the Erotic Lifestyle journey of Pel and Sara, to even my audio storytelling. I suppose the closest to distance I get is in Split Sky and Torn Asunder. But even there, there are characters and situations that I draw intimately from my experience. Hard as that may be to reconcile.

Maybe that’s just me. Taking the cliche of opening up a vein and pouring it out onto the page too seriously. Or maybe it’s just the way I write characters.

Which is by constructing them from their pasts so that I know who they are and what they want, then follow the steps that they would take given those traits and imperatives. Perhaps it’s inevitable that they would be so intimately connected to me that I can’t help but be personal.

On writing physical character description

I have a hard time writing about how people look. Clothes, no problem. The look in their eyes, the way they move or smile, I got it. But their physical look? I have to sit and ponder. Really think about it. Because on a fundamental level, I don’t see their looks when I look at them. I see their personality. Or my impression of that personality based on intuitive logic if we’ve just met. I call it, somewhat pretentiously, seeing with my heart. This doesn’t mean that I don’t see the physical, just that it’s not the first thing I think about when I think of someone. So, in my writing, I have to dig fairly deep into my own head to actually come up with the look of someone. I have to build them so that I know them entire before I know what they look like.