Laura probably shouldn’t say anything — she should probably have a chapter or a page or a paragraph or even a line done before she starts shooting her mouth off about starting something new, but she just can’t help shooting her mouth off about the fact that she’s starting something new.
Or, thinking about starting something new.
Or, probably more accurately, dreaming/imagining/fantasizing about starting something new.
Something new in the way of a book type thing.
Laura doesn’t mean to be coy when she calls it a “book type thing” — starting a new book, or more acurately, dreaming/imagining/fantasizing about starting a new book is always really stressful — stressful enough to make her not want to do it! — so she thought she’d call it something other than a book and “book type thing” seemed close enough without being too exact.
Writing about her life — her early life — her life as someone with braces*, for instance (*braces being merely one visual symbol of her emotionally [or orthodontically] imprisoned youth) — has been something she’s thought about for a really long time — especially since she moved back to her home town for no good reason after bragging her whole entire life that she was the least likely person to move home to her home town. In fact, one of her book editors — the one who edited Piece of Work, told Laura after rejecting her book on failure — yes, the failure book that failed!! ha ha ha!! (or, LOL for younger brant readers) — that what she should really do is write about what it was like to move home to her home town after bragging her whole life that she was the least likely person to move home to her home town.
At the time, coming face to face with the giant massive billboard of her own egregious pathology — what the fuck was she thinking?!?! didn’t she know living a mile away from the temple where she went to Hebrew school would spawn the biggest dissociative regression of all time?!? — seemed impossible. She was, after all, in the middle of the aforementioned biggest dissociative regression of all time since there was nowhere she could go without that giant massive billboard of egregious pathology being completely visible. Writing about herself — namely, writing about her own stupidity, just didn’t seem like something she wanted to do right then.
Not that she hadn’t written fluently and with great glee about her own stupidity in the past! Why, just look at the marvel that is/was Animal Husbandry with it’s self confessed supreme gullibility and willful ignorance of the fact that someone she — oops, I mean, “Jane” — was still in love with even after he had dumped her (stupid fact #1) was dating someone new right under her nose at work! (stupid fact #2) (Read the whole book to find all the stupid facts in it.) (Including the shockingly stupid fact that even after finding out that he was dating someone new right under her nose she was still in love with him!!!)
But even though Laura had written about stuff like that, she’d always written about it in her trademark (<–pardon the self-important “labeling” of her style as “trademark”) thinly disguised autobiographical fiction — something she’d written a lot about, too: for she had no shame not only using all her past stupidities (for some truly epic stupidities find a copy of Her and enjoy!!) as material but telling everyone how she used her past stupidities as material by turning it into thinly disguised autobiographical fiction!
She had, though, never really written about herself – her life, her family, her true thoughts and feelings — in actual non-fiction. Straightforward, non-inside-out-non-fiction-into-fiction. Except in her brant. And even there she wrote/writes about herself in the third person.
Hiding. Always hiding.
And so for some reason recently, out of the blue, little synapses started going off in her head, little flashes of light that made her want to write about things she’s never wanted to write about — or, actually, she’d never been brave enough to write about — not because there’s any Running with Scissors type stories in her past — far from it, unfortunately! — but because she’d always assumed it would be boring and because she’s always been kind of a puss when it comes to being honest with herself.
Laura wishes she could point to some wonderfully memorable symbolic line-in-the-sand type moment when she realized she simply had to write about her life and couldn’t remain silent a minute longer — but she can’t (except for the past week when two important people in her life told her she start looking inside for what to write about instead of looking outside). All she can say is that she figures she should take advantage of that giant massive wonderfully bittersweet billboard that’s been telegraphing the painful merging of her past and present — a merging she herself was responsible for and is only now just beginning to understand — before it gets replaced with an image of lame apathy.
And so she’s going to take the plunge and start peeling back the layers. She’d like to do it really fast — like, over the summer — but she knows that the onion she’s peeling is bigger than she’d like to admit and more stubborn. It’s an onion that doesn’t want to be peeled — or, at the very least, is ambivalent about being peeled — and even though right now she’s lost in this bad cliched metaphor — Is Laura the onion or the peeler? or both?! — she knows that there’s going to be some tears involved.
Enough for now. Laura’s got to go find a peeler…