Monday, July 7, 2008

The Buck Stops Here

You know when you really want to do something, but you don't really do it, you just tell people that you want to do it? Well, that's me with this damn book. At some point within at least the past 2 years, I've been kicking around the idea of writing memoirs in my head. You know, you get some good feedback from a few professors, and all of a sudden, you're a writer, right? Well maybe not, but have you read some of the shit that's being smeared on pages and sold for $25 these days? The Vixen Diaries and On the DL and that crap? That was some 9th grade reading-level stuff right there, and you know it's true. I mean, I'm a black gay guy who served 4 1/2 years in the U.S. Army including 6 months in Kuwait and close to a year in Iraq. There's gotta be some good stuff in there, right? Well, there is, and it's juicy, but the hard part is trying to structure it in my mind.

Was it hard? Well, yeah, but it was also funny, sad, terrifying, thrilling, and life-changing. What is the tone? I certainly don't want to write some sad-sack earnest memoir about a band of brothers or some shit, because that doesn't exist outside of, well, Band of Brothers (that HBO miniseries that is supposed to be superb but I refuse to watch). The Iraq war isn't The Great War. It isn't even a good war, and isn't even being fought for a good reason. It's just some bullshit that a lot of innocent soldiers like myself got caught up in inadvertently, like when a gang leader sends his gang to jump some asshole for smudging his shoes. But it did happen, and there are a lot of things I need to own up to and deal with, and this is the best way to do it. For now though, I think I'm finally about to take this journey. I don't know how long it's going to be or what it's going to be like, but I know I'll have a sense of closure once it's done.

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