Why I Write and Why I Don’t

Recent trends of writing a lot, then stopping, then starting again, then stopping again, have made me reflect on my relationship with writing. It’s not that I don’t have the time, it’s not that I dislike it. In fact, it is quite the opposite. I have more time recently than I know what to do with and I have discovered that writing is the most natural form of self-expression for me (not fashion, not public speaking, not conversation, which are quite obvious if I have had the pleasure of meeting you).

Writing allows for my sometimes slow thought process to catch up to my words before they come out. It allows me to carefully choose the word combinations to honestly and accurately express the thoughts that bounce around in my head. Then the joy of reading it back to myself to double check that it says what I want it to say. I can’t get that when talking. So why is it that I have been avoiding it like the plague?

I have a terrible habit of judging myself. I could go into an exploration of why that is, but for now I’ll leave it at that. And there is something in me that becomes very uneasy at the idea of spending any significant amount of time doing something that is kind of narcissistic and arguably unproductive. Exercising, going to work, creating tangible things, spending social time with others, networking, these are the things that I tell myself I should be doing, before locking myself up in my room and typing my heart out on my little old, but faithful laptop.

But that makes no sense. If I have a desire to write, then I should write. (Not that all desires should be indulged, but positive ones that bring me closer to being my best self should). If I will be more fulfilled, and closer to understanding myself and my place in the world after typing this blog post than after a 30-minute run, then why should I run?

I suppose my conclusion is that life is too short to spend my time judging myself, besides, there are far too many other people out there to do it for me. And if I feel like writing, then I’m going to write, as long as there are things to write about. And if there are not, then God help us all.

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Categories: The Art of Writing | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Why I Write and Why I Don’t

  1. Aunt Mary

    The written word has a magic to it that can never be replaced by spoken words or (heaven forbid) YouTube videos! My day is brightened the moment that I open your blog and see an unfamiliar title at the top! May God continue to inspire you because you truly are a fabulous, intuitive writer and that is so rare these days.

  2. Because writing helps me to maintain good mental health, I believe it to be time well spent, even if my writing sits in my blog draft folder forever (I have hundreds of drafts in there). If I might be so bold, let me encourage you to never choose not writing because writing seems to be unproductive! The act of writing, even if no one sees it, is productive, indeed!!! 🙂

  3. Aunt Michele (and sponsor)

    Dearest Maddy,

    I like to think that we have so much in common and your words make me think it so. Yes there is value in just the writing but the courage to share cannot be ignored. I find great comfort in your writing and your perspectives. I take pride (although little) in thinking that maybe somewhere in your life I have had some influence. I only hope that it wasn’t in the area of self judgment. I have those same tendencies and am waiting to get too old to care………still waiting. Let me say once again (as if my opinions matter) you make me proud and continue to inspire me to follow my own passions (calling)

    Aunt Michele (and sponsor)

  4. the old man

    maddo, keep writing. i feel like you’re inviting us to come up on your porch for a visit.

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