“Some women get erased a little at a time, some all at once. Some reappear. Every woman who appears wrestles with the forces that would have her disappear. She struggles with the forces that would tell her story for her, or write her out of the story. The genealogy, the rights of man, the rule of law. The ability to tell your own story, in words or images, is already a victory, already a revolt.”
~ Rebecca Solnit
Welcome back to my blog! If you’ve been here before, you’ll know I’ve been offline for many months. If you’re new here, welcome! I’m grateful to everyone who stops by and reads my words.
On the surface, I’ve spent the last couple of months figure out what the focus of this blog should be — journal writing, travel writing or even communications/marketing writing, which is how I make a living. In reality, my struggle over the last couple of months has been much deeper.
I have been seeking the answers to questions like these:
- What do I want to write?
- How do I want to spend my time?
- How do I want to live?
I’ve spent most of my adult life being practical. I chose to study political science in university instead of English because I thought I would be more likely to get a job. I studied journalism instead of creative writing — again, more likely to get a job. I’ve worked mostly in communications and marketing because it is a practical way to use my writing skills and make money. It is nice to not have to worry about covering the rent and I care about the work I do, but ultimately it isn’t always fulfilling.
Underneath all of this, I have felt a burning itch to take ownership of my story and write. I spent a year and a half living aboard a sailboat as a teenager. We left everything behind in Nova Scotia and sailed down to Florida and the Bahamas before returning to Ontario, Canada. There were many beautiful moments during the voyage, but also a great deal of danger, anger and frustration, during which I grew from a child to a young adult. All these years later, I’ve come to realize that the trip was a defining chapter in my life. I’ve written three drafts of a memoir about this voyage, but I realize that everything I’ve written so far is the family’s version of the story. It isn’t my version of the story. I am claiming my version of events — my story. This is the main writing project I will be working on for the rest of this year.
After having a childhood uprooted by the sailing trip, I have resisted to desire to travel. I’ve created a life with a comfortable home and a full-time job but I’m still yearning for more. There is so much of the world I want to see and explore. As a single woman with a Canadian passport, I have the freedom to go pretty much anywhere I want in the world. Many woman do not have this freedom and I want to use my privilege in a way that might make the world a better place for women and girls everywhere.
The focus of my writing will be on capturing my past travels in words and images, as well as upcoming travels. But what is an aspiring travel writer to do when circumstances dictate that she must keep her full-time job (at least for now)? She writes about her hometown because it is a destination for others.
I have lived in Toronto for more than 25 years and I know many of its nooks and crannies better than any tourist ever could. However, Toronto is a large city and there are still many parts that I haven’t visited or don’t know very well. This blog provides an opportunity to explore and write about those parts all for the cost of a TTC token.
Welcome to the journey! I hope you find it interesting, thought provoking and enjoyable.