Why We Write… The Revolution of the Written Word

“A word is not the same with one writer as with another.  One tears it from his guts.
The other pulls it out of his overcoat pocket.”
~Charles Peguy

Why do we write?
This question has been on my mind ever since I picked up the virtual pen and started blogging.

Do we write to express the turmoil inside of us?
Is it because we want to be famous, to be known for creating something the world won’t forget?
Do we want to share our experiences and thus help others, who experience the same, to be more informed and prepared?
Is it to prove to ourselves (and to others), that we can construct something, a piece of art people will admire?
Do we write because it’s therapeutic?
Do we write to inspire?

For me, it’s probably a bit of everything – and I am sure we all fit into these categories… more or less.

letter writing skillsI started writing because I felt the urgent need to organize my thoughts, to sort through the chaos in my head and make it palpable – one outburst at a time. It felt so good to have found a way to express myself – and it still does.

Sometimes the spoken word fails.
We can’t say what we think in public, because it might be inappropriate, hurtful or otherwise improper. We can’t say what we think because it just hurts too much to hear it spoken out loud. We can’t say what we think because we fear that others might judge us – unjustly.

This is where the written words comes in.
When we write, there are no boundaries.

I have always been drawn to Poetry – and that’s exactly where I started. I admired poets for expressing themselves and their art through this ‘reduced’ form of writing, was fascinated how raw emotion and deep thought could be compressed in such a way and yet be so utterly powerful – and, to my surprise, I found that writing poetry worked for me as well. Slowly, I began to see that I, too, had a voice… and that it was worth hearing.

After writing a couple of poems and publishing them on WordPress, I discovered that people actually liked what I had to say. This led me from writing for purely therapeutic reasons to experimenting. I branched out, joined a Poetry Prompt Site, started writing in form – just to see what I could do.

I read.
Read… and wrote some more.

For a while, I was content with writing and reading poetry, but soon I got curious to find out what else was in me – what else I hadn’t uncovered. I started writing stories and essays, fictive and non-fictive pieces… and to this day, I am still developing, eager to conquer new frontiers.

ideaIt is truly astounding how people can spur you on… inspire you, encourage you to broaden your horizon; to step out of your safe hiding place – just by sharing their work. You see something… a word, a sentence, a paragraph – and an idea gets born. It takes hold of you, captures your every thought, until there is nothing left but to write it down; to see how it develops on paper.
You breathe life into sterile thoughts and let them unfold, disentangle.
You let them take over… and the process in itself is beautiful.

We live in a world full of restrictions and rules.
Freedom of Speech is still a delicate subject depending on where you give voice to your opinion – it shouldn’t be, but it still is.
I encourage you to enter a world free of bonds, where your imagination has no limits.
I encourage you to get to know yourself, and see what you can do.
Write – and maybe you’ll be lucky enough to ignite a spark in others.

I write because it helps me sort myself out.
I write because I love to see what I can do, what I can accomplish.
I write because I want to inspire others the same way I was inspired.
I write because I can get to know my own voice.

How about you?

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photo credits: british-legal-centre.com; aucegypt.edu

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