When you are in the middle of a story, it isn’t a story at all.

When you are in the middle of a story it isn’t a story at all, but only a confusion; a dark roaring, a blindness, a wreckage of shattered glass and splintered wood; like a house in a whirlwind, or else a boat crushed by the icebergs or swept over the rapids, and all aboard powerless to stop it. It’s only afterwards that it becomes anything like a story at all. When you are telling it, to yourself or to someone else.

Bringing my exegesis together this weekend — I’m grouping my research into an intro and nine small chapters, to present woven between my memoir pieces. The quote above, from Margaret Atwood, applies both to my project and where I am now. Right now this process is a confusion, but in a few months’ time I will be able to recount the last weeks of university clearly. They will form, in some way, a story. In the same way, my characters (Fifteen, Seventeen and Ten so far) are written into story that only arrived at this form later. At the time, each experience was ‘a dark roaring, a blindness…a house in a whirlwind’. This quote begins the trailer below — Ed invited me to see this film at MIFF, but I was out of town. Will definitely chase it up.

What I’m discovering through writing my exegesis:

1. There is so much about this topic, both on the fringes and smack-bang in the centre, that I don’t know.

2. I cannot write at home. Hanging out washing immediately becomes a higher priority.

3. Tea helps, even if I forget to drink it.

4. I am too critical of myself, too often.


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