Speaking of fear my first question for Teryn was what the inspiration was behind, Be the Sun Again. In actuality I wanted to know if what I felt as I read was real. You know how you come across something that is able to pull into the moment of another being before you have time to realize that you have invaded their space? Have you ever had a moment where a scent was able to take you back to a place you had forgotten or encountered a situation that reminds you of the person you use to be? This is what I experienced as I read her book and ability like that derives only from one’s truth. And if Be the Sun Again had one ounce of truth in it, it would mean that Teryn took a leap of faith and exposed herself for the world to see, hence the fear.
“The story was inspired by my past and I had to tell it and get it out to leave it behind. I had to be honest and put myself out there and as a writer it is my right to tell my truth.”
A writer’s right to share their truth - some of the most beautiful words to complete a sentence that should go down in history. Knowing that Be the Sun Again contained a lot of Teryn’s truth; I had to ask her about the characters and the response she received in regards to the book.
“My family knows that the book exists but won’t read it. I think this is because the see me as perfect, which is partly my fault, and if the read it they will know that I am not. It is hard for my friends to read it as well. They too see that I am not perfect. Several characters are based on real people while others are not. One of the women a character was based on, was upset that I put her in the book but after a while she said she was grateful because it showed her the part she played in it all.”
Teryn goes on to talk about one of the most significant aspects that line many pages of her story, the cutting…
“Cutting was a part of my life but it isn’t any longer and has been replaced with something healthier. I was worried about sharing this in the book because I didn’t want anyone reading it to think that it was okay. I now use my experience to speak to teens…”
This is another reason why this writer is more than a gifted tongue. Not only did she step out on a cliff and express her nudity, not only does write her truth in her blog for the world to see, not only she is a poet, but she also manages to counsel youth on a subject others tend to shy away from.
Cutting is more than a “syndrome” defined by medical minds or self- proclaimed expert bloggers. It is also something that infects a person’s world and their outlook on it from the moment they pick up a razor. I can only imagine that it would be difficult to admit to a close friend or family member that you engage in this. And for this reason we need more people, no more women like Teryn to stand up and speak their truth.
Within the LGBTQ community we are constantly looking for more than justice for namesake. We search for musicians who sing our songs, we look for an artist who paints images of others like us, and we search for writers who out themselves and write for the cause regardless of what troubles it may bring. It is not enough to do, we must act and Teryn does just this.
Teryn, who started off as a poet, also shared with me that she misses poetry. After listening to her talk about how she is viewed by those closest to her I asked her if poetry was like that thing that never judges and you can always run to and she told me yes. Teryn doesn’t write as much poetry at the moment because as she explained it to me, “there is no more poetry left in her”. Poetry was a way for her to deal with the hurt and set it free. I think it is safe to safe that hurt is no longer her bedfellow at the moment and this is why her love has gone, but she is not forgotten.
I say it lovingly all the time; an artist is a tortured soul and this torture is almost a prerequisite to entering the field. When things are good she, an artist’s gift, dances around our lives gently caressing our hand to create ever so often. But when life takes the form of the perfect storm she is that lone boat at sea spending all that she has to survive through the night. Oddly enough I think we find our own cure for our torment- we create while others sleep and chase dreams of sugarplums.
Teryn is a woman of many talents. She is part of the founding team that created Lesbian Memoirs, a safe haven for artists of all genres to roam free. She is the co-founder of LM Inc., a publishing company that has managed to gather some of the most talented lesbian writers I have had the privilege to encounter. And Teryn has a blog, as I mentioned before, that really shows her truth as well as a poetry book out, Closing Stages, which I cannot wait to read. And last but not least she is a very talented photographer whose work will one day support her need to write fulltime. Teryn can be found on twitter as well as the previously mentioned places.
Teryn, thank you for taking the time out to speak with me – keep living, keep loving, and keep sharing your voice.