Discover more from Truth Be Told
So about that book…
Telling the truth is hard for a liar. You really have no idea.
In 2019, I wrote a book.
A novel. 12 months, 120,000 words, 46 chapters, three-act structure, hero’s journey without an ending, but I wrote the damn thing.
It was cathartic.
The manuscript went to a well-known, well-credentialed developmental editor—an award-winning author with several best-sellers and an MFA from Arizona State University.
“Your prose is good,” she said. “Tight. Except we don’t get to know your characters well enough.” And she was right.
I fictionalized the truth, glossed over the worst, put happy endings on hard things, got the girl, and triumphed in the end. But that’s not what happened at all. And it showed.
Telling the truth is hard for a liar.
You really have no idea.
It was fifth grade when I discovered it.
10 years old.
The truth that others knew about me that I didn’t know about myself.
Mr. Swinford’s class, recess, walking out of the building. Chris and Joey are in front of me, and they stop dead and start talking about this television program like, “Aww man, did you see it when this happened…” and “Yeah, but that was nothin’, cause then that happened…” and they were going back and forth about this show, and how awesome it was and then they turned to me and said,
“Did you watch that show last night?”
And I said, “Yeah, “ then parroted a few lines of what they’d said.
Chris laughed, gave Joey a shove, and said, “See? See? What’d I tell ya?” but Joey’s face was already squinted with laughter, hiding his braces behind his hand.
Chris stepped into me, chest out. Hot breath stung my nostrils. He smelled of warm corn.
“There was no show,” Chris threw me back against the lockers and laughed. “You lie so much. You’re a liar!”
They walked off together, Chris and Joey, bumping shoulders like drunken sailors, like I was the funniest thing ever.
I thought everybody did it.
There’s no way your life is so fun and so easy. That things at your house are so normal that you can talk about what’s really going on. There’s no way.
We’re all lying, right?
I mean, aren’t we?
Born liar. Have no idea when it started or if I ever knew the difference.
I do remember telling my mom, though.
“I think there’s something wrong with me,” I told her.
“I don’t think my brain works like other kid’s.”
She sneered. “You’re not making any sense.”
So, yeah. About that book.
Some of you are writing books now, and those who aren’t should.
The Collected Stories of Judy Averill: A Family Heirloom
Judy, your collected stories would make a fantastic book. They’re written. Let’s publish them. No, I don’t know how to do it. Not exactly. Not yet. But I’ve taken a few courses, and there’s Google. We can figure it out.
Michael, have you published?
Anne, how far are you into your book project? And Ashley, I know you don’t think you’re ready, but you are. If anyone deserves the title “Author” behind their name, you do.
You taught me to write. You’ve got a book in you.
I’ll share my progress with screenshots, links, and anything else I find helpful.
It would be really great if you would follow along. Even better if we publish together.
I used to lie because I was afraid of being seen for who I truly was.
But the irony is, when you lie, you're never really seen at all.
You become a caricature in a story without a purpose.
So, how do you tell the truth when all you’ve ever done is lie?
We’re about to find out.
I love you guys 😊