“Your memoir sounds just like you,” one of my coresidents said to me the day after our reading. I wasn’t sure whether or not it was a compliment. The reading was as intimidating as hell, as each person was better than the last. But once I got up and started reading, it was fine.
People only laughed at some of my funny lines, but maybe they were laughing on the inside. The sad stuff was sad. There were no words there that did not belong. (This is what happens when you cut a 6-page piece so it fits into a 4 min, 18 sec spot—not that I timed it or anything.)
Some of us stayed up late that night drinking and talking. We talked about being writers. We talked about being straightforward. We talked about being gay or bi or straight. We talked about our mothers, and we talked about writing about ourselves.
I’m not very good at lying. I’m not even very good at prevarication. If you ask me a question, I’ll answer it. The only way I can not answer it is to say “You know what, I’d rather not talk about that right now.” Otherwise I tell you what the fuck ever you want to know.
Even a few years ago I might have been worried when someone said my memoir sounds just like me. I’d have worried that it was too direct, or without enough art. But fuck that. I am writing about things I have seen, experienced, or thought about. I should hope I sound like myself.
What do you sound like?