Bella Mahaya Carter is the author of Raw: My Journey from Anxiety to Joy, and I’m pleased to have her as our guest to talk about the process of writing a memoir–the joys and the anxieties that arise as we explore ourselves deeply. Please join us for a deep dive into the issues that we all face, and how Bella solved hers.
I will talk about the importance of getting out of my own way and trusting that my memoir was unfolding perfectly, even when I thought I’d stopped writing it. In the midst of several family deaths and managing a contentious estate and lawsuit, I developed an anxiety disorder and couldn’t work on my memoir.
But I couldn’t stop writing in my journal, which helped me heal. The journal writing I did during that time turned out to be excellent primary source material. When I resumed work with my editor, I discovered that I’d “written” much of my memoir without realizing it.
Sometimes things didn’t look like how I thought they “should.” I learned to quit “shoulding” all over myself, to surrender the illusion of control in both my writing and my life. I learned to tune in to a deep and true signal within, while turning away from inner noise, and learned how to distinguish what thoughts were valuable and which ones limited my potential. Anxiety was the cause of my chronic stomach problems, and I learned how to transform my relationship with my anxiety and my fears. Writing this memoir freed me.
What you will gain/learn
- We will talk about how to trust your own instincts, and gain insight into how to distinguish inner noise from wisdom.
- We’ll discuss how you can feel excited about honoring your call to write.
- You’ll learn how and why to let go of the illusion of control in your writing
- You’ll learn about the power of writing from your bodies, rather than your head.
- We will look at the way you can nourish yourselves deeply and relate to your fears in new ways.
Bella Mahaya Carter is the author of Raw: My Journey from Anxiety to Joy (She Writes Press, May 2018) and Secrets of My Sex. Her poems, essays, and short fiction have appeared in The Sun Magazine, mindbodygreen, Lilith, Literary Mama, and dozens of other print and online journals and anthologies. She is a writing teacher and empowerment coach who helps students and clients shed inhibitions, find their voice, and live their true calling. Her mission is to heal herself and others through conscious, creative inquiry and expression. www.bellamahayacarter.com