Yesterday my writing buddy Monique Mcdonell posted an excellent blog about writing goals and making sure we have them for the right reasons. You can see Monique’s blog post here: http://tinyurl.com/abqbodk
It got me thinking about why we actually right. Of course this is a subject that has been written about many times before and the answer to the question is different for everyone. Perhaps you have a particular story to tell, want to record your life in words for family members, love the challenge of starting with a blank page and trying to create something out of nothing, or perhaps, like me, you crave the escape form the real world that writing brings, or as Alan Watt more aptly descibed it 2 days ago in The Huffington Post as “losing ourselves in our work by shedding our ego for a deeper connection to our humanity”.
Watt continues: Why we write is more important than what we write because our reason for writing influences the content of our work. It is important to remember that we don’t have to do this. The world is not in a rush for more books. There are more great works of fiction, poetry, memoir, history and pumpkin soup recipes than we will ever have time to consume.
(Read the full article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alan-watt/why-we-write_b_2411000.html)
Essentially we write to express ourselves, to make sense of our world – both inner and outer – and to seek some form of connection both with ourselves and with others who may at some point read our work. At the initial stage of writing, when our thoughts are forming themselves into words, however inappropriate they may be or how frustrating the process can become, we must write for ourselves. We can mould our experiences, feelings and thoughts into some form that goes at least part way to defining our unique take on the world and out part in it. If at some point we are brave enough to share those wordswe create a connection with someone else. We share our humanity.
This morning I was brought to tears by a message on my facebook author page from a reader. Actually more of a non-reader. He picked up my book because of the cover and the blurb and started reading on the bus on his way home from work. he’s enjoying the book and finds a lot in it he can relate to. But the comment that moved me the most was this: …your book speaks volumes to me and I guess I want to thank you as well. I don’t know what for exactly, I haven’t even finished the book but you made me fall in love with books and this book really connects with me. For me, this is the highest compliment a writer can receive, inspiring someone to love books. The icing on an already scrumptious cake.
This month as you write your words daily, every other day, or even weekly, remember that you write for yourself first and others second. Allow yourself the freedom to explore what it is for you to be alive right her, right now, in whatever form seems to work. In doing so you’ll be expressing the core of who you truly are. If, down the track, others read your words and are moved by them – and even if they’re not – that’s an added bonus.