Amy R. (brightknightie) wrote,
Amy R.
brightknightie

"How to Write About Trauma"

Sunday's New York Times included a powerful essay titled "How to Write About Trauma" by Saïd Sayrafiezadeh.

The essay is not in the least fannish. I'm mentioning it here because I think it's potently resonant for writers, for storytellers, which many of us are, in conveying how and why "sometimes trauma alone does not a story make," and that a writer should know, about the trauma in her story, "what was significant about this experience," and should consider how to "make it emblematic of something larger" to thus "turn it into a story that someone would want to read."

However, the essay may be triggery. If that concerns you, skip it and skip the rest of this paragraph, please. This resonant lesson for storytellers comes with "trauma" indeed, and with monsters, and with gruesome silence. Lessons for all, not only for writers. As the author reveals bluntly in the first sentence — not the last, note; it's the exposition, not the climax, of the essay; a point is made about structuring and storytelling, from non-fiction to fiction — as a small child, the author was raped.

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