Writing Personal Stories about Alcoholism Recovery v. Works of Fiction
Photo by Bob Osias on Unsplash https://tinyurl.com/2p9hzwx4
What is the point of writing for Medium?
At its most basic, it is to post a story.
I start to write with the goal of hitting the Publish button.
Where I am now in my writing for Medium journey, I need to complete stories and post them as often as I can, at least 5 stories a week, preferably more.
That’s a lot of finished pieces.
The other consistent writing I’ve done in my life is screenwriting.
I’ve written many short film scripts, 5 of which were made into films. I intend to make more of them into films, also.
I wrote half a feature and stopped because the train went off the tracks.
And then I wrote a feature and also completed a second draft of it.
I don’t know how much different that type of writing could be from creating regular stories for posting to Medium.
On Medium - write, edit, search for a picture, post to my personal website, then post to Medium, publish, and it’s out there.
The purpose behind screenwriting is to make it into a film.
There may be deadlines along the way, but from the first word on a page to a completed film is a ridiculously long journey.
And, as it is said, a film is made 3 times. Once in the writing, once in the shooting, and once in the edit.
The screenplay is only part of it.
In the shooting, and in the editing, numerous changes may be made to what was written.
For me, completing a film that started as an idea in screenplay form is an incredible feeling.
I’ve produced my screenplays, and have directed 4 of the 5 that have been made.
So, I’ve been on the journey all along, from start to finish. I don’t know what it’s like to turn a screenplay over to a team that will take it and go from there.
Honestly, right now I’m feeling the tyranny of the algorithm, like I need to feed the beast.
Internally, I’m rebelling. It’s affecting my creative flow.
Whereas my screenplays are works of fiction, my Medium stories are based on my personal experiences as a recovering alcoholic. They're non-fiction.
I’m opening up in a direct way, and putting my life before a portion of the public whom I do not know.
It’s a vulnerable feeling. It’s also empowering. And it has opened up many recollections and created new windows of understanding and reflection for me.
I love that.
But, it’s not easy, in any way.
I have a lot of good story ideas.
I’ll get them out. I’m committed to this. For now, and for the foreseeable future. I know that life brings many changes and that any commitment I have can only be done today.
I can’t stay sober on my birthday, which is in August, today. I can’t write a piece for Medium in October, today. It’s June 1st.
So, here I am, telling the truth of the moment.
I’ve stayed sober so far today, and I have no desire to drink.
I’m writing about resistance to writing because I feel it acutely.
I want to make my feature script into a movie. I don’t know what step to take next.
I’m going to an Off-Broadway show tonight. As it deals with alcoholism, I’ll be writing about it soon.
I feel better having written about resistance to writing. I’m going to complete this, and maybe I’ve opened up the door to writing another story or two today. We’ll see.
P.S. I just created the title of this story. As I did, I realized that I need to shift my focus. I’m not writing for Medium. I’m writing for me, and I’m writing for anyone who may get something out of it.