What’s your writing background, when did you begin writing and what inspired you?
I began writing as a child. I used to write poems and stories. I wrote a book as a 13/14 year old by hand. I really used reading books and writing as an outlet from my depression. I stopped writing for a few years and started again as I first began getting into drinking and and hard drugs. I imagined myself being a modern day Dylan Thomas at the end of the bar with some witty stories. This did not come true as a spiraled deeper into heroin addiction.
I did not write for many years after I got off drugs. I slowly started writing pieces here and there for myself. In January of 2013, I decided to have a go at starting a blog. My blog is a way for me to tell my story in my own words. Because of the documentary Black Tar Heroin: The Dark End of the Street, I felt as if people had all sorts of ideas of who I was without asking me. I like to write my own narrative. I have been branching out lately and doing more journalistic pieces. This is a new genre for me. Very exciting stuff.
How often do you write, and how do you manage to fit in writing among other commitments?
I write at least one blog post a week. I write on my phone, on a break at work, any free time I have gets filled up with writing if I am in that zone. I take breaks here and there to recharge my batteries. My main subject is my life so there are times when I get sick of hearing my own voice.
In which genre do you most enjoy writing?
I spend a lot of time on memoir. This may change over time. I am still at an age where I can remember things that happened to me that are worth capturing in the written word. In the years to come, these events may not be as crisp. I need to capture them now.
What draws you to write in that genre?
I feel that as a survivor of abuse and addiction, I have a story that might inspire others. I truly feel I was given a second chance at life. I feel it is selfish to waste it by keeping these details to myself. As a semi-public figure in the US, I am not afraid to share all the gory details.
Can you tell me about your current project(s)?
I am working on a book on relationships, I have a blog www.traceyh415.blogspot.com, and I do some freelance pieces related to harm reduction.
What are your writing plans for the future?
I plan on writing as long as the motivation stays with me. I feel I have a unique point of view that can be used to educate the public on the topics of abuse, addiction, and recovery. People need accurate information – the truth – not the sensational.
Where can people find out more about you?
- To read Burgundy Leggings a piece of non-fiction by Tracey Helton click here.