Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Self- Depricating Humor & the Writing Life

I am completely comfortable with myself. As you should be. I have decided that for my creative non-fiction project, I am going to do a memoir. I am going to create a seperate blog to post these chapters as kind of a way to get a test audience.

I have such a fun and colorful and interesting past (as my writing mentors agree) life that I just have to reach back, pull out and put on the page. I am writing this post during some downtime at the Wilkes residency, FYI.

The Naysayers
There are always people that are going to roll their eyes. I firmly believe that is because they are envious or even worse, jealous. Many times when someone succeeeds or even just enjoys life to the fullest and can laugh at themselves, those who take things to seriously begin to mock that creative person. Many of you will know what I am talking about. A silly picture will appear and people act shocked. I would never share anything that'd I 'd be embarrassed about. But on the flip side, I want to entertain, so my stuff has got to be edgy. For example, tonight at a non-fiction meeting, I spoke with Bev D'Nofrio, the woman who wrote Riding in Cars with Boys- it was a very edgy memoir from her childhood that ended up being a movie of the same name starring Drew Barrymore. She is on the facutly here. Wonderful woman- and she really gave me some great advice and encouragment. I am more apt to listen to her than someone who scoffs at a silly picture on my blog. I love the faculty here; they understand me.

You know what? It is people like Dave Sedaris, Augusten Burroughs, Chelsea Handler, Tucker Max, Dave Barry and even almost every stand-up comic out there that PROVE that laughing at yourself and sharing your follies is a way to become successful. Self-depricating humor is something that has always been popular, but it seems that in today's society where reality shows and revealing memoirs are king. That's what works. If you happen to personally know someone who shares a funny story, why on earth would you think less of them if you laugh at people like Dane Cook and Jerry Seinfeld and the other above mentioned people-- they are sharing the same things. Does that make sense. I personally have not run into many naysayers- and if you are one, Syonora. I don't care- I surround myself with supportive people.

I had a conversation with someone tonight about this topic. He said, "What if other people call you ridiculous for something that you did one time?"

I say, "So what.... it was a five minute time in my life that made people laugh. People laughed. That's what matters." If I want to be a writer, then I also want to be an entertainer- you don't get to be an entertainer by being boring.

I think being comfortable with yourself to do something silly solely to get laughs makes you a good person, and far more fun to be around. And I am okay with that. Why are some people so serious? I look at people in my creative writing class and instantly gain respect for them because finally, people like US are together. And you know what- those in my field that ARE successful are the ones the are responsible for entertaining the REST of the world though art- novels, essays, memoirs, screenplays, plays, films, poetry and such. Do realize that television and Barnes and Noble would not exist without people like me and my peers?

If you want to write or create and someone laughs at you- even if it is a blog post- ignore them. They are no good. Not everyone will agree with everything, but you know what, I want to be a writer. I want to be successful. You don't get anywhere in life, epescially in the arts, by being a wallflower. Standing out and being remembered is key.

I am having a great time at the residency this week. I am surrounded by some of my favorite people in this world and being more inspired than ever. Just wanted to check in with my blog...
I am going to do a memoir and it is going to be fun, like me.


(edited for typos)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Pois e realmente um programa maravilhoso ver o desfile de 20 de setembro em Piratini. Em 2007 eu fui pela primeira vez assisti-lo e fiquei emocionada, e um desfile muito lindo feito com alma por cada um daqueles gauchos que la vivem. Vale a pena..