Kent keeps asking us “why do we Write?” I’ve attempted to address his question a couple of times but still he isn’t satisfied. “You haven’t really answered the question,” he says to my surprise. So what is the answer? I ask him. He doesn’t say. I do know that when I’ve responded I’ve held back a bit, not wanting to ramble on and on about it on someone else’s blog. So I suppose I will address the question here from a new angle. In my opinion there isn’t one answer, or a correct one, because why a person writes (or paints, or plays the violin) is unique to them.
For myself I just KNOW that I love to write, I’ve never really thought about why. Not really. Until now. Writing is just something I need to do to feel happy, like breathing is something I need to do to stay alive. Would my live be as meaningful without writing? No. I don’t even have to think about it. It is just a fact. So there you go, writing gives my life meaning. But that’s not really what I want to write about. I want to write about why I think other people write or why writing has value. Is this the same question? I’m not sure and I don’t think it really maters, I’m just attempting to get to the root of this thing so we can move on (although I’m guessing the question will still linger).
I’ve known Viv, Gregg and Kent for about 18 months (Gregg longer). We’ve had dozens of conversations during this time frame. We began our blog group just shy of 3 months ago and we have all posted our writing on our new blogs. I’m amazed, I mean really astounded by the quality of writing in this group. When I read their blog entries I’m thinking, “Wow, it would really be a loss if these people didn’t write.” It would be a loss for me because I really enjoy reading what they have to say. So why is this? What is it they have to say in writing that they haven’t said to me in one of our numerous conversations? Why is it important for me that they write?
Viv writes about her mother, her pup and her overflowing passion for Paris. Her writing reveals more of who she truly is; what is important to her shines through in the words she selects to describe specific details of her stories. When I read what she writes I know her a little better. That’s because when we Write we can’t hide. Who we are peeks through every word, sentence and paragraph. Writing puts us in a vulnerable place. We are seen, especially by our self. And that is why I think most of us write whether we are aware of this or not. We WANT to be seen. We want to be known for the unique person that we are and writing gives us the opportunity to do this.
The same is true with Kent’s writing. I couldn’t fathom that this question, “Why do we Write”?, was so important to him until he wrote about it. Twice. He’s tenacious. I didn’t get that about him simply from talking to him, but I see it clearly when I read what he writes. I get a glimpse of the way he thinks and what is important to him when I read what he puts down on paper. His writing is like the part of the ice berg hidden beneath the sea, what he has to say there is so much bigger than what can be presented in a conversation. This is true with all of us who enjoy writing.
And Gregg, yes, the same thing. Gregg writes about the meaning of life in his first blog. Could I have guessed that all this was going on inside of him without reading what he wrote? No, and I talk to Gregg a lot. Writing gave him the opportunity to delve deeper inside and share what he was thinking about with the rest of us. As a result we all know much more about Gregg. We SEE him, he is more vulnerable, and we feel closer to him as a result. But again, that is what I believe we all yearn for; to be SEEN.
We don’t want to leave this earth without being noticed in some way. For writers, writing is a way to express; “I am here, I want you to know me and I don’t want to be forgotten.”