As some of my followers know, I am part of IWSG, which is a wonderful writing group that I found a few weeks prior. Every first Wednesday of the month there is an answer that we answer that the lovely co-hosts in the site–Jeminima Pett, J Lenni Dorner, Cathrina Constantine, Ronel Janse van Vuuren, and Mary Aalgaard–send for my fellow writers, and bloggers, share their own experience, advice, or anecdote. I am a new writer and I haven’t even had anything published as of yet. Despite this, I found my flock and resources. Hopefully others can see this post, through my almost daily writing
For October 6th, the question is this: in your writing, where do you draw the line, with either topics, or language?
In my past work, published online on AO3 or given to my friends, or my personal eyes, I never crossed the line with individuals who were raped, or graphic description of violence. It did not feel comfortable with those topics due to nausea or revulsion I experience when seeing it in media, both traditional and not.
It takes someone with mental fortitude to write about that. For the writers who do this, I am proud of you for doing this. You are able to provoke a visceral reaction from readers as you honed your craft to do so, and, perhaps, you are not affected by what you write.
I know that I am someone who gets stressed out from other people talking venting their problems, divulging their emotional experiences with me. I need to take a breather, and that’s what I do with literary work or in the media.
Besides those two topics that I won’t touch, the only language that I draw the line at is derogatory language to minorities as protagonists or supporting characters. Minor characters can be punched or experience a tragedy. I am tired of seeing this in our society and how I feel helpless at times because I cannot change the situation. As a writer, you have control over what happens. Yes there are times where you piece will write itself, but at the end of the day, you edit slashing or adding things into your manuscript. You crafted a world, you decide what occurs and I ignore this language, but there are people who are xenophobes, racists, sexists, homophobes etc. in the world.
As a writer, you are showing to the world, or to a select few, your vision. You know your limitations, and you are proud of what you put out. Even if a few days down the line, months, or years you think your writing is garbage, it just means that you have grown.