An exercise at the end of the first chapter of a book entitled Writing Creative Non-Fiction required me to answer this question – Why do you write? My then handwritten response to that question in my journal is produced below.
I express myself best through the written word. I write when there is an unceasing flow of thoughts. Many times I want to write at moments which are not really conducive to writing … in the shower, in the car … for it is then that my mind is free and deep thoughts come flooding in. Despite capturing those moments later on the page I found that the essence was weaker … the intensity of the moment was gone.
I write when I feel the words are too many to carry inside and need to spill out on the page, thus making room inside me for more to come in … like Feng Shui the space is cleared and the energy flows.
I write to share my thoughts. I write to thank when I really mean it. I write to console when someone’s loss resonates so deeply within that I need to speak through my felt pain which connects us for one timeless moment.
I also like to write I am angry. It helps to sort my emotions. Years later I get to read and savor these rantings and wonder where I was at that past point in my life, what has changed, how I’ve changed (hopefully for the better). I write because when I read my old journals I notice the rare depths I experienced in those jottings of long ago. At times I laugh at my past naivete and childlike nature which was yet untainted by life’s sometimes tough experiences.
I love the feeling of a smooth pen nib on paper, the swirls and formations of writing that are physical interpretations of my nebulous thoughts. I like to write because our written words become a part of a record, perhaps casting light on situations shared by us all. I like to write because it is an act of creation.
My deepest connection with any human being would be through my writing. It would be only for that person and for one moment in time that special feeling would be worth it, for the words, content and delivery are unique to that person alone and I am not afraid then to speak with my soul because the words are unfiltered. It is pristine because that’s just what it is … without a thought to diction, tone or volume.
I connect through writing.