I have a favor to ask you. It is not about the election.
In fact, it is entirely about me. Surprise!
I know you are all readers, and that you're smart and interesting and have great senses of humor and an appreciation for the peculiar. I know this because I have great taste in friends, and because you would not have stuck around if this were not the case.
OK. So. Here's what I'm wondering.
If you were to put my writing in a category with other writers, where would you put me? Like, if I were to aspire to cozy up to other books you've read and liked, what would they be? Or other authors, if you don't have specific books in mind.
I'm asking this for two reasons.
One, I'm in search of memoirs that help inform my writing, and that I think would likely be in the same category, except that my category, as I currently see it, would be a combo of mental illness/suicide and internet dating/comedy.
Suicide attempts are never funny, obviously, but sometimes you're in a private room near the ER waiting for them to tell you if your dad is still alive and you're so upset that you accidentally dial phone sex.
I'm not quite sure how that goes down. But it is true and real and part of the journey.
My list currently includes: The Suicide Index; An Unquiet Mind; Prozac Nation; as well as a re-read of Girl, Interrupted. Also flipping through my copy of Furiously Happy for fun and research purposes.
I'm focusing on mental illness, but I don't want to overlook memoirs that might be similar-ish or helpful, even if not specifically focused on mental illness. I'm thinking along the lines of Wild, my Cheryl Strayed. I saw the movie but haven't read the book, but the healing journey resonates with me.
That kind of thing. I know I'm being a little bit broad.
The second and realer reason is that I'm working on a proposal and I have to figure out who I might aspire to compete with and/or snuggle in with. Obviously, my voice is my own and I am not trying to change it, and I couldn't make it like someone else's if I tried.
But, for example, I'm looking for author X, as in, "If you like X, then you'd probably like Lisa's writing."
Like, I would love to put myself in with The Glass Castle. Jeannette Walls is an extraordinary writer, and she describes traumatic events without a drop of self-pity. Mary Kerr does this as well. Those are aspirational cozy-up buddies.
Turns out I've always been drawn to traumatic childhood memoirs. It just took me well into adulthood and many years of therapy to know that I had and figure out why.
Why so oblivious for so long, Lisa?
It occurred to me that asking you, people who both like my writing and are not living in my head, or dealing with my fears and insecurities, made a lot of sense.
I would super duper appreciate your thoughts and suggestions.
Hugs! Love! Thanks!