I was reared to play my hand close to the chest, and though I do still consider myself a pretty discreet person, I realized recently that in order to write, you have to show your hand sometimes. Non-writers want to impress others, but most writers know better than that. What's called for more often, is revealing the ways we simply aren't that impressive, and sharing it creatively with the world. There are so many instances these days were a person can demonstrate their profound cowardice--the dentist office, the hospital, credit applications, relationships, the list goes on and on. Writing, however, is certainly not for the faint of heart, nor the faint of ego for that matter.
Everyone who has ever written anything from a thesis to a thank you card knows that writing takes effort, time, thought, and self-discipline. It also takes guts. When I was writing as a teenager, I wrote like a chicken. I wrote about things I knew absolutely nothing about. I had a wonderful and secure family, and a fun, if not quirky childhood. I wrote, however, about graves, tombstones, cancer, evil, darkness, shadows, and death. I had nearly NO problems as a kid, and I wrote like I should've been on a police hold for self-endangerment watch. As I grew up a little though, and had ACTUAL problems, my writing style grew up also. All of a sudden, with actual grief to deal with, my writing became far easier on the soul. I yielded to the lest-than-stellar aspects of myself as an individual, and figured there had to be at least one or two people in the world who could relate. I lost the desire to preserve the image of perfection, of she who can handle anything. I became more willing to let others know that yes, there are some ways in which I suck, perhaps you suck in these ways also, but even if you don't, know that we're all just working on the rough draft of ourselves, and that's okay. In my humble opinion, I think it's made me a better writer.