Dear writer,

Nothing is more paralyzing than self-censoring before the words hit the page. Some part deep within us applies a filter for Mom, Dad, Grandma, our significant other, our boss, our kids, or future kids that we may or may not ever have!

You don’t have to take ownership of your story. It’s not you. It is a distillation of all you’ve seen, heard, and experienced.

You are not your thoughts and feelings. You have your thoughts and feelings. You are not your experiences. You are not your stories. You are a conduit.

Much of your writing may be based in truth, but no one has to know that. Write and let it go like a balloon into the sky. The words will be found. Then the stories belong to your reader.

Don’t worry about the nasties you write. Under the guise of fiction, you can write anything and everything you want. If Mom reads it and is appalled, simply lie. Yes, tell her you made it all up. Deny it to the death. She can’t really prove otherwise.