This is not going to be a happy post. I’m not sure if this is really the kind of thing the Insecure Writer’s Support Group is meant to address. But I feel I need to do this in order for my healing process to begin.
In the stories I write, characters die. Sometimes people are massacred in great numbers. Other times, characters get killed off individually for dramatic effect. It’s all done in service to the plot.
I’ve heard writers joke about how often they “murder” characters in their stories. I’ve joked about it myself. I don’t think I’ll ever find those kinds of jokes funny again. Not after the experience I had late last week.
It would be inappropriate to discuss the details of what happened in a blog post, so I’ll only say this much: a gun was involved. At one point, I thought I was going to die. One person did die. I knew the victim, and I knew the shooter, though I can’t say I knew either of them particularly well.
Friends tell me I’m handling all this remarkably well. But of course I’m not. Not at all. I’m never going to forget the things I saw and heard. I’ll never forget the fear I felt. My healing process is going to be long and arduous. I know part of that process will involve returning to my writing routine, because writing is so central to who I am.
Except given the subject matter I tend to write about, how the hell am I supposed to go back to doing that? Right now, I can’t bring myself to look at my manuscript. I can’t even think about it without reliving what I’ve just been through. Nor can I work on something new and different—something fun and lighthearted—without constantly reminding myself that there’s this thing I’m trying really hard to avoid thinking about.
But I can write this blog post. Maybe that’s enough for now. At the very least, I hope it’s a place for my own healing process to start.