Have you offended someone on the internet this week? Congratulations! You’re not dead!
We are all so damn sensitive these days. We are offended by the candidates running for office, by religion, by the lack of religion, by feminism, by anti-feminist sentiment, by Black Lives Matter, by all lives matter. It never ends.
Is it any wonder so many writers are afraid to write their truth? Especially when it comes to memoir and non-fiction, we are so quick to judge, aren’t we?
Don’t get me wrong: I’m judgmental. I admit this openly, and I struggle with it. I do believe, in many cases, “there but for the grace…” In other cases, there’s a knee-jerk response to castigate someone. I try really really hard not to give in. But in this age of social media and instant gratification, it’s so easy to just blurt/type the first insult or condemnation that comes to mind.
I have a firm policy, when it comes to reviews, especially. If there’s something bothersome to me – an editing or formatting issue, or something constructive like that – I will tell the writer directly. I will not post a negative review. I just won’t. Also, as a corollary, I try not feed the animals at the zoo, so when someone trolls me, I give one short reply and move on. I think these both may fall under the heading of “if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”
I see so much gasoline being poured over fires these days that it’s a wonder we don’t all burn.
That being said, if you – as a writer – already know that someone is going to get offended, and pissed off, no MATTER WHAT you write, then you have NOTHING TO LOSE! Ta-da!!! Try to bite your tongue: get judged. Tell the truth: get judged. So much better to be honest and true to your character and individuality than to attempt to conform to something impossible.
In your writing this week, throw caution to the wind. See where that takes you. I promise you, it’s okay. You’re safe, and you have a voice and words to share. Someone needs to read those words. So write them.
Blessings to you all…