Thursday, June 19, 2008

Book Review: Writing Motherhood

Welcome to Just Peachy Baby's first book review! There is so much to write about from everyday life as mom that I've had my hands full trying to blog about motherhood moments. But, I can't help but want to tell you about a book that just came out on paperback, Writing Motherhood, by Lisa Garrigues.

I have read quite a number of books on journaling, writing memoirs, and just plain writing. But, they have all left me feeling not-good-enough or just intimidated by all the do's and don'ts. Reading is tied as the 3rd love of my life (with writing). Because of that, I am often frozen by the fear that I can't write to my own expectations of being a "good read". I'll say things to myself like, "Ugh. That was sappy and sentimental." or "How trite is that? Don't you have anything original to say?"

Reading Writing Motherhood didn't spawn any of these critics in my head. I cracked the book open, braced myself, and found inspiring voices speaking to me as I turned each page.

Here are the things I found myself saying as I read Lisa's book:

* I have doubts that I have anything meaningful to say. But, I am not alone. Writing is an "avenue for personal growth". I don't have to be afraid of "what (I) might discover along the way."

* Don't think too much about how the writing will turn out. Just zoom in and write what I see. From Lisa's ABC's of writing: " 'Z' - Zoom in on your life. Writers, like photographers, examine the world as if through a magnifying lens.. When you write, go for the close-up, not the panoramic view. Zoom in on your subject with a magnifying lens and write down exactly what you see."

My real hang-up with finding time to write is really my problem with pleasure. Writing for me should no longer be a nice-to-do any more. Writing "is about reclaiming (my) right to pleasure and wholeness.. Self-nurture is about much more than treating ourselves to a nice movie or pleasant massage once in a while. It requires us to make strong statements to loved ones about our limits, boundaries and needs." (Lisa's quote of Alice Domar and Henry Dreher)

Lisa has taught Writing Motherhood groups, helping moms write about the moments that inspire them, that they want to capture and pass on. I haven't met Lisa, but by the time I finished the book, she had somehow become a guide to my writing experience, pointing out things that motivated me to keep writing.

If you're looking for a book to inspire and motivate you to start or keep writing, I think you'll enjoy this read.

We had a book review day on Silicon Valley Moms Blog for "Writing Motherhood". So, feel free to check out what other writers had to say about it as well!

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