Phyllis Schieber Author

Women's Fiction by Phyllis Schieber

The Consolations of the Mask

Laurie Moore  refers to the “consolations of the mask” as the feeling of making a place that doesn’t exist in your own life for the life your life has no room for. It’s in this vast reservoir of memory that writers draw from to create fiction. These days, I find myself  in that place more often than in my “real” life. I sense that is because I am struggling with my writing. Consequently, I burrow into my memory for material, sort through the files where I have stored all the memories I always knew I would later use. It’s not a terrible place to be, this storeroom of impressions and feelings and unspoken ideas that needed a place to live while I was moving about in the present. I find that behind my closed eyes, I can see everything that already happened unfurling itself like wonderful collage. I am struck by the power of where I have been and what I have learned… the struggle is how to shape it into stories, rearrange the material in a way that will allow it to soar off the page with some immediacy. I’ve been here before, but this time feels different because I am lingering in the storeroom far longer than usual. I don’t know what to discard and what to keep. Everything seems important and nothing seems important enough. Still, I am venturing out because I know how it feels when I make the words dance on the page. It’s been awhile, but I’m getting my rhythm back, finding the courage to venture out and rearrange the past into the present.

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March 21, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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