Yes, I Want To Write

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I have a lot of natural writing ability, and I take advantage of my innate understanding of syntax and structure to simply throw my thoughts onto a page without a care for concision or creativity.

But at heart, I am an artist. I am a poet. I am a singer. The factual, disconnected writing I often use on my blog to describe my life is almost academic when I see it juxtaposed against the intensity of my thoughts.

A couple of weeks ago, I made a commitment to myself that I would begin taking more care with what I write. Whether this means simply choosing a more appropriate word here and there, attending to my concision, or expanding my vocabulary and my ability to handle my writing, I don't quite know. What I do know is that I want to look at my own writing and know that I have written from who I am. I want to know that I have given something of myself to my readers. I want to be able to take pride in what I write, instead of turning with a grimace and trying not to read what I have written.

I don't often write what I want to write. I haven't journaled in years because I have re-read what I have written and I have cringed at what feels to me drama overdone. The intimidation of that blank page overwhelms me. I have stories that I contemplate writing, but I am unwilling to subject myself to the possibility that it will be something someone else has already written. Occasionally, I delve into poetry here, but I can barely tap the descriptive power I used to own. I am a better critic than I am a creator anymore.

Over the next few days, I'm planning to post a series of samples of what I consider to be my real writing, just some small, bloggable projects I have worked on in the past. I'm also looking at a couple new ideas for writing exercise that I may put on here, forming a description around one word, perhaps. I'd like to to do a word of the week - how does one pick one of those?

As I'm preparing to put my photography away for a few years, I'm finding myself looking forward to having more time to do other things that make me come alive. I wonder where it will all end up, or if any of it will go anywhere! I'm tired of saying the same things in the same ways.

(image from sxc)


Anonymous said...

I understand what you mean with regard to going back to past journal entries and feeling like it displays 'drama over-done'. I feel that way, too.
But then I remember that the passage of time usually softens the pain of past difficult events or daily struggles.
As we grow, our perceptions of events in our past change, so that, perhaps, we will never see things the same way again.
I have found your blog to be tremendously fascinating and poignant.
I am excited that you are going to focus on your writing and look forward to the words that you will put down. But, sometimes, your extended, deep free-flowing thoughts are just as touching, so please don't let those go when they come. God is telling you to speak to others when those powerful words surface. It is so awesome to want to be intentional with your writing, but please let God speak through you at those times.

A word a week sounds great, too! I can't wait to learn from you and expand my own vocabulary.

I have missed your photography, but understand why you need to put it aside. I hope that you bring your camera out once in awhile to keep us gasping at the beauty that you capture. In the meantime...I'll still be reading away.

God Bless! You, Pete, Piper, and Button are in my prayers.


dancebythelight said...

Looking forward to reading more of your writing!

I originally started my blog to jump start my writing. After college I was so drained I felt like I couldn't write anything creative anymore. Truly, growing up I wrote "novel" after "novel." I wouldn't say they were good, but fictional stories poured out of me. I seem to have dried up that well and that makes me sad. But, I've seen to found something in writing creative nonfictional spiritual articles, or whatever you call it.

So anyway, I definitely understand where you're coming from.

Jessica said...

"I have stories that I contemplate writing, but I am unwilling to subject myself to the possibility that it will be something someone else has already written." ...I know what you mean here. That's how I've felt about almost every story I've ever tried to write, or thought about writing. But then again, there really is nothing new under the sun. Most likely there IS a very similar story out there somewhere, but who cares? Writing is a form of expression -- i.e., it can be almost as edifying (it not more edifying) to the writer than to the reader.

I haven't done much creative writing in quite a while (mostly for lack of time and inspiration), but this is how I feel with a lot of the more "devotional" posts that I write. I'm sure someone else has written it before, but I write it at least as much for me as I write it for my readers. It sticks with me better that way, helps me sort out my thoughts. I think the same can be applied to creative writing in some sense.

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