From Orwell’s point of view: writers put pen to paper out of “sheer egoism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse, and for political purpose.”
Why do you write?
I believe, often the case is that we write to leave something tangible of ourselves with the world, something of our journey, a record -who we are and where we’ve come from. Bits and pieces of our story might be cloaked behind a fantasy character’s epically larger-than-life persona, or diminutive underdog’s experiences.
The world is saturated with bloggers and computer literate people who write, but just because we write effortlessly does not mean we write well. Good writing draws people in to want to read more. It captivates their imagination, their intellect and a host of other possibilities.
The goal in writing fiction or narrative (literary) nonfiction, should be to bring an experience to the reader to allow them to step out of their skin, out of their reality and drop them neatly into another’s reality. To teach them something about themselves or others.
Hello, doorway into other realms? Absolutely. Bring that on too!
Words have weight to them. An immeasurable capacity to spearhead images and experiences from thinness of air and implant them soundly within our imagination. Words deliver experience. Words shaved, shortened, elongated, made-up, or fraught with hidden meanings have endless power to cause the reader’s mind to respond in some way.
With courage and conviction, the reader may be inspired to try something they never would have imagined possible. Scale Mount Everest like Bear Grylls and then write about it, as he did! Become a consummate chef like Julia Child or how about Julie Powell – the woman who blogged about Julia Child because she was so interested in reading about her life, she decided she needed to make a change in her own and became an inspiration to countless others in the process. Eagerly await the postman, sure that one day, someday, my Hogwart’s Acceptance letter will find its way into my possession.
Writing can be just the prescription that many of us need to discover that we too can accomplish great acts of heroism, or even greater acts of ordinary- that often go overlooked -but still take dedication and commitment to weave a life of purpose from them.
We find just a little bit more courage rising up after encountering an inspiring or even cautionary tale.
Life is shaped by ideas. Expressed through words, empowered by love, or not love.
Why do I write, you ask?
For all these reasons and more, and because I think with every thought, experience or story that bubbles out of my brain and onto paper (or “screen”), I feel I’ve validated my life in some small way, left something that might aid someone else in their journey which will have made mine the more worth while. Provide a little cranberry relish to a swedish meatball and potato kinda day.
So let’s wield our words with precision and purpose and have some crazy stellar-fun in the process too!