Deep Dark Secret #1 – Know the Sparkly Bits
I like to think that every event that happens to you in life, from the joyous to the awful, comes equipped with little sparkly bits that rub off. You graduated at the top of your class? Here’s a bunch of bright white sparkly bits. Your husband died? Here are some blue and black sparkles. You lost a child? Here are some more blue glittery bits. Sold a book? Bright yellow ones. You were assaulted and raped? Here are some red sparkles. You bought your own house? Here are some bright green sparkly bits.
We can’t choose which sparkly bits to keep or discard. They’re there, and they cling because we’re the repository of the things that have happened to us. But in the end, I don’t think what happens to us is as important as what we do with the experience.
With luck, we can take those sparkly bits and do something with them. Collect them all together and use them to illuminate the way for other people. Let the sparkly bits cling to the pages of books we write, the same ones people say make them laugh and cry. Look at our own sparkly bits from time to time and realize how strong we are, how resilient, and how much we’ve endured.
I like to imagine other people, sometimes even strangers, wearing their own sparkly bits. I think about what might have happened to them, what their overall color is. Have the joyous parts sparkled just a bit more than the other events? Or have the tragedies overwhelmed the good things in their lives? It’s especially important for me to examine myself and to see which colors are glowing the brightest. In other words, to know all my sparkly bits. Or, as other people would say: Writer – know thyself. Because if you don’t know yourself, how can you possibly know other people, even characters?
More deep dark secrets from other writers:
I confess to laughing at numbers 2 and 4.