what’s the story, man. errr, woman.

It’s one of those rare days, yesterday, that’s filled with all of my favorite things.

Well, nearly everything. Driving ‘round and ‘round to find the destination is no barrel of monkeys. I do eventually arrive, late, fired up and frustrated.

Collapsed into the door frame, I’m welcomed by a stranger, a mother bear of a goddess who commisserates for her own distressed travels. In just those 10 seconds of embrace, her rotund figure and pillowy bosom soak up my stress like sponges.

Drained of half my tensions, I then take my seat at the table in the library’s conference room to join the women’s writing storytelling circle.

I’m not a group person, neither a joiner, so it takes something pretty special to entice me in, especially in the early morning hour of a Saturday.

It’s the second circle meeting (I missed the first last month) so all faces are new, all voices unfamiliar. Our prompt last month is: Who Was I at Age 10 (20, 30, 40, 50 …)

Today’s the opportunity to hear who each of us in this donut’s dozen was at the chosen age/decade. Each story is well written, to varying degrees, and fairly well delivered. You can learn a lot about a person by how s/he speaks. In the first go-round, it’s clear who has leadership abilities, who is mid-range and who is passive or submissive.

I hear about learning to read and write again at an adult age. About marriages made on others’ expectations that eventually entrap. About having a child with a disability. About veering away from the Mormon cult. About youthful steamy indiscretions. About the sanctuary found in nature.

My story, if assigned a central theme, would be a house, from 23 years back.

“I’ve a gift for spaces and places … highly sensitive to their vibrations and environments,” I tell one woman who as the circle disbands steps forward to share that she enjoyed the piece. She could identify. And like me, in adulthood, the longest she’s lived in one residence is five years. (around 1-1/2 is my norm.)

That’s the thing about stories: Each stands alone, as unique and inviolate as the breath drawn by one’s own lungs. And each, in some eventual time or space, is connected by some common thread … be it an old drafty house, an entrapping marriage, encounters of lust, smothering judgmental mothers …

The prompt for the October circle: Beginnings. I can hardly wait to hear what was her beginning … and hers … and hers. Links in a chain of stories encircling the world. That is human existence.


16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Country Cinderella
    Sep 19, 2010 @ 19:52:11

    It sounds like you had a really good time. Will you be posting your writings that you share in that group?


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 19, 2010 @ 21:44:25

      Howdy – I adore, simply adore, writing circles comprised of a strong sisterhood and had been waiting a long time for something like this to materialize in my area. I’m thrilled that it did and bummed that it’s only once a month, I could easily do weekly! To your question, it’s extremely unlikely I’d post those writings due to their personal/journal quality.


  2. longeyesamurai
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 02:47:13

    If it’s okay to jump on the bandwagon, I too would like to see to read more of your writings.

    I’ve been toying with the idea of joining a writer’s group but I have to admit Time is a handicap. I have to make do with 1 month a year with NaNoWriMo… Which is probaly akin to being hooked to an espresso drip.

    Have a nice day!


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 20, 2010 @ 12:48:53

      And how would you like that espresso in a drip? Black? Or with a spoonful of sugar? Kudos for doing NaNoWriMo.
      As for writers’ group, do it. Depending on how it’s run*, you’ll like it.

      *i.e., is its purpose to listen, critique and edit or to listen, share and respond? I’ve been in both kinds and much prefer the latter. With the Mother of All Editors in my head, I don’t need no friggin’ 10 in my face! 😀


  3. Cimmorene
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 09:08:47

    Hey. I enjoy writing myself. In fact, my own blog has seven stories, at least, in it that I wrote in response to some writing exercises I turned up. I’d love to read some of what you wrote. I’ll bet it was good.


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 20, 2010 @ 12:52:33

      Hi Cim – I know of your writing prompts, I make the enjoyable trip over to your blog regularly as one of those dreadful lurkers 😉 Your comment as well as a few others here got my mind percolating on a post for the future. Thanks for coming by and commenting.


  4. cryinforthedyin
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 12:12:04

    Hello..An interesting premise for a meeting..by the way..it seems directions should be succinct and well thought out..but..on the how long in residence thing..Carmela and I have stayed an average of five-10 years. Anything over a year was an adjustment for me..and her as well I think..sign of the times?..could be..Peace Tony


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 20, 2010 @ 12:59:46

      Cftd – The group’s organizer is in the clear on the directions; they were via Google maps, which isn’t perfect 100% of the time, and just one leg could’ve been better clarified is all. I did eventually find it after advancing and backtracking along the same damn stretches of freeways and exits for 20 minutes!! The longest I’ve lived in one residence ever was 10 years — as a child with the parental units so I had to go with ’em – lol. Thanks for poppin’ in.


  5. aubrey
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 14:18:17

    For some reason, I think October is the best month for looking back and reflecting. Perhaps autumn whispers breed confidences.

    Please do share your stories.


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 20, 2010 @ 15:17:38

      In my neck of the evergreens, autumn whispers are soggy wet blankets that breed no confidences save that it will be a long eight months or so of sunless dreariness, dampness, gallons of coffee, barrels of beer and for many continued refills on their antidepressants prescriptions. Story enough? 😉 Thanks for poppin’ by, long time no visit.


  6. Raymond
    Sep 20, 2010 @ 15:36:29

    I’ve never asked you before, but have you ever written a book? You may choose to ignore my question if its uncomfortable, I was just curious. I like the way you write, the mechanics I don’t really understand, but I enjoy the way the thoughts of yours flows. I can’t get my sentences to flow past a comma. They seem to devolve into a confused rapid before I get to the terminal thought. Seriously, a period for me is just a decoration attached to the end of a confusion. Anyway, I sure do like how you do this magic called writing. 🙂


    • allycatadventures
      Sep 20, 2010 @ 17:12:08

      Howdy, pardner! I’ve not written a book. By life purpose, passion and design, I’m supposed to write a book, rather books, but am beset by ills a-plenty that keep me from doing what I came here to do. Like procrastination. Ruinous self-doubt. Relentless self-judgments. A general conviction that I don’t deserve to do what I love to do (write) and be happy. The certainty that no one would be interested in what I say (roots deep in childhood). Overwhelming feelings of inferiority against writers with obvious naked talent (Hemingway, Twain, the list goes on). To name a handful of ailments. 🙂

      Periods have their place. Sometimes they come too soon, sometimes not soon enough. At any rate, I’m glad you enjoy the work, though I’m a tad puzzled why you thought I might find your query about the book writing uncomfortable, so if you care to illuminate, illuminate away {period}


  7. Raymond
    Sep 22, 2010 @ 09:39:45

    I guess its the public profile of blogging. Wasn’t sure if its something you might want known. And people, well writiers, use pen names. I read somewhere that for some people writing is a very private thing. Mostly, I guess, I just didn’t want to trespass nor make you uncomfortable.


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