Monday, July 30, 2018
Why Put Pen to Paper
I can't believe it's been almost 3 years since I published my book. It's been on my mind as I have a series of book signings and events coming up. What I remember people asking me at the time is, "When is your next book coming out?" Now I didn't say it but my in my head I was thinking, "Hey asshole I just finished this one give me a minute!" If you've never written a book you can't appreciate the amount of time and effort it takes. What's even more amazing is that while I was writing it, I was continuing to pen my blog.
I do my best to put a blog post out every week. I'm under no obligation to do it, but I feel the pressure to keep it up. It has its own momentum now and I am a afraid of losing that. I have posted almost every week for the last 5 years. Having a weekly writing assignment really helped me develop my narrative voice. I learned that I have several different tones and that I can even blend them. These days I think I have a fairly well developed writing style so I am torn between keeping the blog active, and cutting myself some slack. See I don't know that many people actually read this thing. This is like a message in a bottle that floats on the ones and zeros of the web.
So why do I do it? Well it may not be widely read, but there have a been a few times when people have told me that what I wrote really helped them. There have been instances where writing about my life helped me to see it more clearly and get my thoughts and feelings more sorted. When you have to compose things for others you have to step outside your normal perspective. It's the difference between knowing something and being able to explain it. Of course with all of this speaking of my truth, I do worry that I am making myself completely unemployable. Companies scour the internet for prospective employee's postings. My posts can be not safe for work, or quite radical.
Why am I telling you this? Well the art of the written word is the one thing that sets us apart from other species. While other creatures have language (particularly dolphins and whales), they don't tend to write anything down. Writing gives a permanence to thought, as well as organization. For this alone it is useful. Writing crosses the ocean of time to share words and ideas between people both intimate and strange to each other. However the value I find is that the stranger within myself gets to know itself. As I write I see more clearly the content of my own mind. Some things I see are not comfortable to view. Others give me hope. So I suggest you write your own thoughts down. Put pen to paper. You need not cast it onto the electronic ocean for strangers to gawk at. You may keep sealed in a secret place for your eyes only. See yourself through the lens of your words. You may be surprised at what you find.
Peace and Blessings,