As a very insane, very online, girl I have been thinking so much about these tweets I favourited a while back:
[tweets copyright of respective authors]
This links in to a talk I covered for For Books' Sake, titled 'Women, Feminism and Journalism'
The question of telling your story as a marginalised person is a wonky one, you are both exploited and ignored. To be a writer from a background outside the norm leaves you open to both tell-alls and ignore alls. And whilst the publishing industry is overwhelmingly white and middle class, I do think if you are young, if you are a woman, if you are a survivor, if you are struggling with mental health, if you're outside of whiteness, there is a pressure to offer up your trauma like a wedding ring to eager internet anons.
And as someone who openly journals on mental health and like ***taboo*** trauma I can't help but question where my writing fits into this all. Is Milk Teeth car crash blogging? Is car crash blogging even a thing considering I may have just invented the term five minutes ago? Should my blog sit on a shelf with Warhol daily disasters and xoJane 'It Happened to Me's?! How do you feel about the personal essays published for $30 industry?
I myself cannot dismiss writing personal work as a whole as:
1. I do it! And I believe in the work I do!
2. I think to widely reject this craft has a misogynistic vibe y'kno? Like dudes who make fun of girls for reading Sylvia (even though I have a difficult relationship with her work but that's another story.)
3. Related to 2. I think this can perpetuate respectability politics and an attitude that we need to be quiet about our suffering, when I think people can do whatever the hell they want!! Rather I am interested in the ethics of the genre, both in reading, writing and in publishing.
It's a funny subject isn't it?
One I don't think I have an answer for!
What do you think?