I stopped writing and stared at the last few sentences. Clearly, Jeremiah was gone. Instead I found my own feelings, my own ideas and my own past.
Exposing myself in such a blunt way was not my goal. I am not writing to convey an idea, or to express an opinion. I write because I want to tell a story, period. Finding myself taking over my main protagonist in such a way was not a joyful experience. I know my own life's story. I'm not sure I want anybody else to know it that intimately.
Taking a step back and re-writing the section I was working on was the reasonable thing to do. But I wanted my story to Go Forward. So I took another look at what I wrote, decided it was not that personal, and moved on. And yet - it still nags me. I don't want to tell my story. I want to tell Jeremiah's story.
I posted on writers.stackexchange.com and asked about the effect of personal feelings while writing. John Smithers offered a great response:
You are cutting off your most valuable writing resource...Free it, or I promise you a massive writer’s block.He is right, of course. But I do need to find a way to have Jeremiah find his own words, and not use mine.