Writing About Tough Stuff Gets People Uncomfortable. Do It, Anyway

Sometimes, others might get uncomfortable if you write about certain truths or topics. In this video, I explain why you need to write about that tough stuff, anyway.


When I first started as a writer, I just wanted to tell good stories. But over time (and many, many filled journals), I’ve learned how powerful writing can be for change. It helps you work through things. It helps you ensure other people don’t ignore important things just because they don’t want to deal with those things.

So, now I don’t want to just write good stories. I want to write good truth. I want to make people pay attention to pain, not to point blame, but so people can heal.

writing tough stuff

I am well aware not everyone is going to like my topics. But my life has been built on the question of what has to be done. Not necessarily what I or other people want to be done. But what must. That’s what comes of having no option other than moving forward and figuring things out. You learn to confront. And so now I think I understand the material I need to be creating. I’ve lost the fear I had of releasing it. Truth is truth. It matters that somebody advocate for it.

Some of you have a gift for confronting through your words. Don’t shy away from it. Use it to make good trouble. We need a whole lot more of that.

Image credit:
Valerio Errani from Pixabay

[transcript summary]

Hey, everybody. Wanda Thibodeaux of takingdictation.com here.

What I want to talk to you about today is writing about the tough stuff. And this might not apply to everybody. But whether you are writing a memoir — even in fiction, I think we can have some tough scenes. That’s why we have trigger warnings now in a lot of books. And writing about that kind of stuff is not necessarily easy.

What I want to mention in this video is that sometimes those things — part of the reason why they are hard is because people don’t want you to talk about them. It gets them uncomfortable. But what I want to encourage you to do is, if that is your truth, if that is the reality, that is truth, that is the reality. And your job isn’t necessarily to make people comfortable. And I’ll tell you why.

The only time that things really change is when people face things that are uncomfortable. And that’s not to say that you’re not considering people and how you’re coming across. It’s just saying that progress cannot happen until we face what we have anxiety about. Okay? So, the encouragement that I want to give you is that, if you have topics like that, that you want to write about, don’t shy away from them.

Your job is to tell the truth, whether it is your truth, social truth, whatever it might be. But the truth is the truth, and your job is to deliver that. If people need some help accepting that truth, you can be there for them, and you can have those conversations. But have the conversations. You don’t need to let other people stop you and censor you because they get uncomfortable. Help them through that. That’s how change happens. So, use your words as power. That’s my advice for you today.