Confidence and the Act of Writing

The daily diet is 24/7 news, carnage, disease and disasters. It leads to feeling overwhelmed. Here’s a thought for consideration. Writing is enough. Enough for what? Enough for one life? Enough to get through one day? Enough to move beyond feeling drowned in the overwhelming?

Photo by Max Andrey on

Sometimes, I let the uncensored pen guide me. On the page I relive memories of my family, friends, politics, the woman’s journey. The inner and the outer life…the faults and fears. I stand back and say don’t be so hard on yourself and your choices back then or of their choices which is probably more important.

Memory is intricate, shapeshifting. I think about how to break through to what May Sarton calls memory’s “rough, rocky depths.” I have my writing to dig deep, unearth the secrets. I gain confidence. Much is written in newspapers about older women losing confidence in themselves. Women are up against a lot. A society that discriminates against aging, the feeling of losing one’s attractiveness and worth. Stay focused on something meaningful, stay engaged with friends, strike up a conversation with a stranger, they say.

Many theologians preach that whether you’re searching for God or not, hope and transformation serve as the pathway to meaning. When we engage with others in meaningful and uplifting pursuit, hope and transformation naturally follow, don’t they? It’s the reason I cherish the love among fellow writers as we share our words and stories.

We love someone and so we write.

It is the season of Advent. Darkness envelopes the spirit. The holidays leave many grappling with loss, grief, pain, even death.

Advent is a time of expectation. A gloomy day soon gives way to sunshine. Yes, there is light at the end of the tunnel! A writer takes it all in, loses her naivete, applauds herself for declaring her independence…no apologies, no excuses.

Writing in this crazy world leads to mindfulness, which leads to understanding, or at least a little peace of mind to accept each other, to stop worrying, to accept ourselves…to confidence.

Published by Susan G. Weidener

Join me as I share reflections, always with an eye toward the challenges and struggles we women encounter and embrace in both creative and personal ways. My memoir, Again in a Heartbeat, was selected as a 2011 editor’s pick by Story Circle Network. Its sequel Morning at Wellington Square has also achieved critical acclaim. A Portrait of Love and Honor, a novel based on a true story, is centered around a story of two people, Ava Stuart and Jay Scioli, who are destined to meet and Jay's commitment to honor following his years at West Point. My new novel And the Memory Returns continues the story of Ava Stuart who begins asking herself those questions so many women face as they age. What had it all meant? Where does she go from here? In 1991, I joined the staff of The Philadelphia Inquirer and worked as a reporter covering news and writing feature stories until 2007. A native of the Philadelphia suburbs, I attended the University of Pennsylvania. In 2010, I started the Women's Writing Circle, a critique and support group for writers in suburban Philadelphia, which meets the second Saturday of the month at the Chester Springs Library. I live in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania with my Yellow Lab, Lily.

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