Love this piece, Ashley! From one spiller to another, I get you have secrets. I have them too!
In fact, I’ve been thinking about this topic since I read an article about why people AREN’T reading personal essays. First off that was news to me because I know they are reading yours and mine. I didn’t know we fit in a unique category, though. That there are a lot of personal essays not being read – I had no idea.
Why Won't People Read Your Personal Essays?
The personal essay has always been hit or miss with me. Some writers are gifted at writing the personal essay and I find…
As I pondered this thought I realized I stay on one side of an internal imaginary line that separates vulnerable raw stories that I share purposefully from the unfiltered stories that I could share in a “vomity” or exhibitionistic way. I work hard to honor that line out of respect for myself and for my readers. You do too.
And I think keeping those kinds of secrets builds a kind of trust with our readers. That they sense we aren’t going to take them someplace psychologically unsafe. Yeah we both go to very powerful and raw places but deliberately. With our eyes wide open and with a goal in mind.
Thank you for discussing this further. Very interesting.